NEWS

Villages In Rewa, Nadi Given Funding To Protect Environment

Thirteen villages in Rewa will benefit from the Ministry of Environment Jobs for Nature (J-NR) Programme. Yesterday, recipients from each village received a cheque from the Minister for Agriculture, Waterways
09 Dec 2021 12:34
Villages In Rewa, Nadi Given Funding To Protect Environment
Minister for Environment Mahendra Reddy, Permanent Secretary Joshua Wycliffe, Director Environment Sandeep Singh with recipients of the Ministry of Environment Jobs for Nature (J-NR) Programme in Nausori on December 8, 2021. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Thirteen villages in Rewa will benefit from the Ministry of Environment Jobs for Nature (J-NR) Programme.

Yesterday, recipients from each village received a cheque from the Minister for Agriculture, Waterways and Environment Mahendra Reddy. For years, Nukutubu villagers have tried to get assistance to build a seawall around their village, but their plea always fell on deaf ears until yesterday.

Mikaele Rajaele said he was thankful that their village was one a recipient of the J-NR programme.

“Nukutubu Village is located in a low-lying area and whenever it rains or during high tide all the rubbish is washed into our village and at times few houses are under water,” Mr Rajaele said.

“This is the first assistance we have received, and we will make sure a good seawall is built so that we do not suffer any more.

“Thank you Mr Reddy and team for your assistance. This means the world to us. We have been asking for assistance for many years to help with the building of our seawall and this is the first time we are getting it.”

There are more than 200 people who live in Nukutubu Village.

Metuisela Vuniduvu of Tavuya Village said more than 250 villages would benefit from the seawall they planned to build.

“Climate change has really affected our village. Our village has suffered for a long time and now we can continue where our forefathers have left us,” he said.

“We have lined tyres along our shore of the village to try and minimise the risk of flooding in the village when it is high tide and the cheque received will help us a lot.”

Mr Reddy said the J-NR programme adopted the concept of genuine partnerships and collaboration with local communities.

“It encourages environmental stewardship and protection among Fiji’s citizens to actively engage in the protection, restoration and rehabilitation of their natural environment,” Mr Reddy said.

He highlighted that it was important to protect the environment for the future generation.

The Ministry of Environment would monitor and evaluate the programme and are expected to work closely with communities to support all rehabilitation and conservation efforts for the benefit of all Fijians. The 13 villages are Nadoi, Tavuya, Lokia, Drekena, Nasigatoka, Vunuku, Nabua, Nukutabu, Nasilai, Narocivo, Lomanikoro, Nukui and Vunisinu.

Minister for Agriculture, Waterways and Environment, Mahendra Reddy with grant recipients of the ministry’s Jobs for Nature (J-NR) Programme at the Mushroom Training Centre, in Legalega, Nadi on December 7, 2021.  Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Minister for Agriculture, Waterways and Environment, Mahendra Reddy with grant recipients of the ministry’s Jobs for Nature (J-NR) Programme at the Mushroom Training Centre, in Legalega, Nadi on December 7, 2021. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

Soil worry highlighted

On Tuesday, in Nadi, Yaswant Kumar, 56, a farmer, became one of 10 grant recipients of the (J-NR) Programme at the Mushroom Training Centre, in Legalega, Nadi.

On the 10-acre farm in Nabau, Nadroga, Mr Kumar revealed plants sugar cane and vegetables and he understands well that soil erosion could not be avoided along the Navutu River.

“As environment ambassadors or champion on the ground we need to protect our environment and be leader resilience,” he said.

“We need to keep our environment clean and in my case I need to protect the river banks from eroding, and with this grant we will plant special trees to hold the soil,” he said.

Nabau Women’s Club president Susana Tawake said: “We are concerned about the eroding river banks along the Tuva River where we highly think it should be restored via mitigation.”

“It is important for us because of flooding in the area. This grant will allow us to plant trees such as Dakua, lemon, and Ivi to sustain our future livelihood.”

The club was founded three years and it has 54 members who are all environment advocators.

Minister Reddy, during the handover there on Tuesday, said that as champions of environment, it is their roles to grow biodiversity and biological resources.

“All of you know very well the importance of nature, environment, and expanding our biodiversity,” he said.

He stressed to recipients that our existence and survival cannot happen in a vacuum.

“We want to maintain this nature that has been given to us by our forefathers. It is our obligation and our responsibility to at least leave it in the same state as they gave it to us, for our children, our grandchildren, and our future generation,” Mr Reddy said.

Feedbackwaisean@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



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