NATION

Deceased Man’s Family Compensated

The family of a civil servant who went missing at sea seven years ago has been compensated. Amelia Kotobalavu, widow of Timoci Ratoki, received a $12,000 cheque from the Ministry
28 Aug 2014 03:22
Deceased Man’s Family Compensated
From left Johnny Anthony with coach Steven Brown in Suva on September 13, 2019. Photo: Grace Narayan.

The family of a civil servant who went missing at sea seven years ago has been compensated.

Amelia Kotobalavu, widow of Timoci Ratoki, received a $12,000 cheque from the Ministry of Labour’s acting deputy secretary of workers’ compensation service, Isimeli Tuivaga, in Suva.

Mr Ratoki was employed as a boatman with the Ministry of Fisheries and Forest when he went missing at sea on November, 30, 2007.

He was travelling by punt from Makogai Island to Natovi to deliver giant clams for the Ministry’s re-seeding programme in Dawasamu.

The punt was later found but Mr Ratoki’s body was never recovered.

The 44-year-old widow fought back tears after being handed the cheque saying she couldn’t believe that the ministry had contacted her to come and collect the cheque.

“Today I want to thank God; I never dreamed this would happen because we’ve been waiting for so long; seven years.

“I also thank the ministry and heads of the ministry for the assistance,” Ms Kotobalavu said.

She said the assistance would greatly help in sending her two teenage children to school because she had been selling handicrafts to make ends meet.

“We will make sure to put this money into good use; I will be spending it on my two children, on their studies and also on our daily lives,” Ms Kotobalavu said.

Her two children are Ilikimi Navale, 16 and 18- year-old Atasa Coka.

Mr Tuivaga said it was the priority of the ministry to make sure that those who had lost their lives at work would always be compensated.

“The compensation for the family is $24,000, of which $12,000 is awarded to the wife, $5000 to his son and $7000 to his daughter,” Mr Tuivaga said.

Because the two children were under 21 years their trust accounts would be managed by the ministry until they come of age.

Meanwhile Mr Tuivaga has also confirmed that 154 compensation claims have been paid out so far this year and there were more than 100 cases still pending.

He said they were requesting for additional funding so that all outstanding compensation claims could be cleared.

Feedback:ana.sovaraki@fijisun.com.fj




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