NEWS

Reddy Gets Barrage From Opposition

Minister for Education Mahendra Reddy received a barrage of questions about cyclone-damaged schools from the Opposition in Parliament yesterday. Mr Reddy told Parliament the construction of schools was not managed
31 May 2016 09:14
Reddy Gets Barrage From Opposition
Minister for Education, Mahendra Reddy outside Parliament yesterday. Photo: Paulini Ratulailai

Minister for Education Mahendra Reddy received a barrage of questions about cyclone-damaged schools from the Opposition in Parliament yesterday.

Mr Reddy told Parliament the construction of schools was not managed by Education.

He made these comments while responding to a question posed by Opposition MP Salote Radrodro.

Ms Radrodro asked him to give an explanation of when construction of these schools in badly affected areas would start.

Mr Reddy said: “The step is to call for expression of interest from commercial construction companies to design the construction, that process is closed.”

Mr Reddy said around the second week of June, packages and clusters would be given to major construction companies to carry out construction in different areas

“Because around 10 -20 schools will get better deals out of that; that is the process being conducted, once we get the start date then we can give the end date; but overall it is the desire of this Government to get infrastructure ready by the end of this year,” he said.

Ms Radrodro then demanded if there were strategies to replace tents that had been used by students whose classrooms were destroyed by the cyclone.

She said according to Red Cross statistics, there were more than 80,000 children who were still sheltered in these tents.

Mr Reddy responded the strategy was to rebuild the classrooms and an assessment was needed to be done first as part of the process.

“Given the number of schools affected it takes time, 181 schools had been done and still awaiting reports,” he said.

Opposition MP, Niko Nawaikula, said it was the minister’s responsibility to see that schools were constructed.

He shouted out “we don’t want desires; we want action and what have the ministry done to the welfare of these children”

Mr Reddy responded that it was Mr Nawaikula’s problem that he didn’t pay attention to his ministerial statement.

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