FIJI NEWS

iTaukei Committee Launched

TALEBULA KATE NADAVE A milestone event was created last night after 14 Provincial Commissioners (Roko Tui) and 14 iTaukei resource owners representing the 14 provinces signed up an agreement to
31 Jul 2014 07:43

TALEBULA KATE
NADAVE
A milestone event was created last night after 14 Provincial Commissioners (Roko Tui) and 14 iTaukei resource owners representing the 14 provinces signed up an agreement to establish the National iTaukei Resource Owners Committee.
The signing ceremony, which was organised by the Ministry of iTaukei Affairs, took place at a special cocktail at the Centre for Appropriate Technology and Development (CATD), Nadave in Tailevu.
In his address at the signing Permanent Secretary for iTaukei Affairs Savenaca Kaunisela said they had been trying to establish the committee for more than three years and he acknowledged the German Agency for International Co-operation (GIZ) for the much-needed resources and technical advice to convene this meeting.
“The objectives the committee is to promote the capacity development of the iTaukei, to make informed decisions on the sustainable management of their natural resources,” Mr Kaunisela said.
He added the committee would ensure the involvement of the iTaukei in the decision-making process with regards to issues that affect their resources and support efforts to increase the resilience of the local iTaukei communities against the impacts of climate change and natural disasters.
Mr Kaunisela said there was a need to protect the interests of the local communities and indigenous groups in the management of their resources under a number of international conventions that Fiji has ratified.
The committee will report directly the iTaukei Affairs Board through the Permanent Secretary for iTaukei Affairs.
The signing ceremony was preceded by a two-day inception workshop through which the members actively participated in the discussions for the terms of reference for the National iTaukei Resource Owners Committee.
Deputy team leader for GIZ Coping with Climate Change in the Pacific Regional Programme Christine Fung said the two day workshop cost $20,000.
Ms Fung said they recognised the committee in helping the resource owners and also to ensure that the voices of the iTaukei at the grassroots level are heard at the national level regarding national policies, planning and sustainable resource management.
Guests at the ceremony were Bau chiefs, Ratu Epenisa Cakobau and Turaga na Roko Tui Bau, Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi.
Feedback: talebulak@fijisun.com.fj




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