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‘Service A Celebration Of Resilience’

The service to remember those killed by Tropical Cyclone Winston wasn’t just a commemoration but it was actually a celebration of resilience of the Fijian people, says an Australian government
22 Feb 2017 15:03

The service to remember those killed by Tropical Cyclone Winston wasn’t just a commemoration but it was actually a celebration of resilience of the Fijian people, says an Australian government minister.

Australian Minister for International Development and the Pacific, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, made the remarks to ABC’s Pacific Beat.

She said “We had people who came in from the villages who had lost their loved ones.” 

Ms Fierravanti-Wells said the roll call of those who died was read out.

She said there were families and friends who came to the ceremony so it was a lovely ceremony.

“It was a real honor to be present on this very important occasion,” she said.

She said Australia remained a long standing friend and partner of Fiji in good times and bad and there was the immediate assistance that Australia gave which was the life-saving assistance.

Then there was early recovery which was $10million in relation to like medical team, educational materials, food security, medical equipment and vaccines.

Then there was the Australian Defence force support which was considerable, she said.

She said Australia’s help had been very well received by Fiji.

On climate change issue, she said Australia helped Pacific countries to effectively in practical ways either to mitigate or adapt to climate change impact.

“We have been very specific in assisting our Pacific neighbours to prepare projects for consideration by the Green Climate Fund,” she said.

The reality was there would be another cyclone and there would be another disaster.

“So therefore, what’s really important is of a whole climate-related events is disaster preparedness  in the Pacific. And that’s where we are supporting the national and local preparedness, the response and the recovery.  We have two Australians called disaster national preparedness specialists here in Fiji.”

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedback:  mere.satakala@fijisun.com.fj

 

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