NATION

Boy, 9, Shares Daily Struggle

  Nine-year-old Mohammed Khan clung on to his mother as they attempt to cross the Korotari River. With just three steps from the river bank, the water was up to
28 Jan 2017 11:00
Boy, 9, Shares Daily Struggle
None year old Mohammed Khan (front) and his mother Jaminath Bi crossing the Korotari River. Photo: Josaia Ralago

 

Nine-year-old Mohammed Khan clung on to his mother as they attempt to cross the Korotari River.

With just three steps from the river bank, the water was up to his knee.

The boy slipped.

His mother, Jaminath Bi, grabbed him by the shoulder in time, preventing him from being swept away.

This is the story of the Year Three student of Korotari Arya Primary School, who has to cross the river beside his house daily to get to school.

Because the stones are slippery, Mohammed has been swept by the strong currents numerous times, often sustaining bruises to his legs.

“I do not wear my uniform from home, I have to change in school every day,” Mohammed said.

This is an example of what residents of Korotari, outside Labasa Town face daily.

Ms Bi said down the stream, the students from Matalolo and Satulaki villages also faced the same problem.

The Fiji Sun team caught up with the students who were making their way across the river a little after 6am.

Some of them, as young as five, were already on the other side of the bank waiting for the bus.

In a statement, Fiji Roads Authority chief executive officer, John Hutchinson,  said; “FRA is aware that there have been discussions for the construction of a foot crossing for the Korotari community but unfortunately this is not up for construction in the 2016-17 budget as it is not on the Commissioner’s list of priority works.”

Mr Hutchinson said they would revisit this within their list of priorities.

Edited by Caroline Ratucadra

Feedback:  josaia.ralago@fijisun.com.fj

 

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