NATION

‘We Are Ready To Serve’

We are ready to go out; roll up our sleeves, get our hands dirty and start helping the people in Vanuabalavu, says HMNZS Canterbury Commanding Officer, Commander Simon Rooke. He
04 Mar 2016 09:25
‘We Are Ready To Serve’

We are ready to go out; roll up our sleeves, get our hands dirty and start helping the people in Vanuabalavu, says HMNZS Canterbury Commanding Officer, Commander Simon Rooke.

He made the comment when the ship arrived at the Port of Suva yesterday carrying more than 160 tonnes of humanitarian aid assistance.

“We will be out there as long as the Government of Fiji needs us,” Commander Rooke said.

“Our job is going out there, get our hands up, roll our sleeves up, and start helping people on the island.

“Most of the humanitarian aid consist of construction materials, food rations and water as requested by the Fijian Government.”

On board are 140 personnel from the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) and another 160 personnel from the New Zealand Army and the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF).

Also on board were two Naval Seasprite Helicopters which will be based on the vessel and two NH90 Helicopters that would be operating from Suva. A medical team from the New Zealand Ministry of Health was also on board to be deployed to Vanuabalavu.

“Our focus is to bring equipment and materials to build hospitals and schools; to help with the infrastructure running up in the islands.

“If also required, we will distribute food aid but the information that I have is that there is sufficient food supplies in Fiji. We have to distribute them to the northern Lau Group.

“We are working directly with the New Zealand High Commission through the National Disaster Management Office,” he said.

The vessel is expected to arrive in Vanuabalavu today.

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