NEWS

Disability Not A Problem: Amputee

Ravuama Matanaqaqa, an amputee, says his disability  did not stop him from applying for assistance under the Government’s Micro and Small Business Grant Scheme. The 60-year-old villager of  Delaitokatoka in
29 Aug 2017 11:00
Disability Not A Problem: Amputee
Government assistance recipients Ravuama Matanaqaqa (amputee) of Kalabu and Samu Biturogoiwasa of Naduri Village were among the thousands receiving their cheques at Ratu Cakobau Park in Nausori on August 28, 2017. Photo: Jone Luvenitoga

Ravuama Matanaqaqa, an amputee, says his disability  did not stop him from applying for assistance under the Government’s Micro and Small Business Grant Scheme.

The 60-year-old villager of  Delaitokatoka in Kalabu, Naitasiri, was among the 2331 small business entrepreneurs who received assistance from the Government yesterday.

Mr Matanaqaqa operates a piggery in his village where he breeds about 18 to 20 pigs.

He manages this piggery with the help of his brothers and extended family members.

“I am very grateful to the Government for the assistance rendered today and for identifying me even though I am physically disabled. I stay at home with my youngest son and my wife has died,” he said.

“This money will go towards expanding my old pig pen so that it can accommodate more pigs in the future.”

Mr Matanaqaqa said the assistance was the first of its kind for him to receive from any government.

Meanwhile, Naduri villager Samu Biturogoiwasa said his dreams of opening a home-based bakery has come true. He said the grant would go towards helping his wife who sold handicraft at the Nausori market.

“I was planning to open a baking business to help my wife sustain our family income.

“This money will help me buy baking equipment to kick-start my business,” Mr Biturogoiwasa said.

“I want to thank the government for assisting us to realise our dreams of improving our livelihood through small business ventures.”

Ba resident Nirmala Reddy, 57, of Raviravi, Ba was excited for her daughter Savitri Devi, 35, who also received a $1000 cheque yesterday under the scheme.

Mrs Reddy said her daughter who was recently divorced needed the assistance to start a poultry and flower arrangement business in order to earn an income to support her eight-year-old daughter.

“We are very grateful for the assistance given today that will go towards building a shed for the poultry farm and also to buy provisions for the flower arrangement business.”

Government assistance

Government has invested a total of $11.59 million to assist 12,079 micro-entrepreneurs in Fiji to date.

The investment, allocated under the Micro and Small Business Grant scheme, directly impacts the livelihood of 60,395 people.

While handing over cheques yesterday Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism, Lands and Mineral Resources Faiyaz Koya said the Government had invested a generous amount towards business ventures in the hope that people would seize the opportunity to make a difference in their various communities.

He distributed $2.29 million yesterday.

Mrs Lusiana Ucakereilagi of Lautoka was assisted with $1000 to expand her handicraft business.

Ms Sainimere Niasa of Suvavou Village was assisted with $1000 to start her canteen business.

Vilikesa Kalou of Korovou, Tailevu, was provided with $859.42 for her farming business.

Mr Koya also announced that the programme had been allotted a budget of $6.4 million for the 2017/2018 financial year.

Edited by Mohammed Ali

Feedback:  fonua.talei@fijisun.com.fj



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