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Colour Coding For iTaukei Villages

The iTaukei people living in villages will benefit from the proposed colour coding by the Ministry of the iTaukei Affairs. As expected, the announcement had drawn criticisms from some iTaukei
11 Sep 2017 10:02
Colour Coding For iTaukei Villages
Deputy Permanent Secretary Apakuki Kurusiga

The iTaukei people living in villages will benefit from the proposed colour coding by the Ministry of the iTaukei Affairs.

As expected, the announcement had drawn criticisms from some iTaukei leaders.

At the provincial council meeting of the provinces of Nadroga and Serua this year, Deputy Permanent Secretary Apakuki Kurusiga said that the policy would apply to all villages and the three colours used would be green, yellow and red.

The Ministry of iTaukei Affairs has been working with other Government ministries especially the Ministry of Health on this new policy.

They are also carrying out leadership workshops in villages and the colour coding policy had been discussed.

When asked to elaborate on the colour coding he said, the most developed villages would be in the green category, villagers that are developing in yellow and the least developed villages in the red category.

Mr Kurusiga said for those in the green coding, were villages with very little or no crime, good leadership, respect of the village by-laws, have installed leaders, good sanitation, have regular village meetings etc.

For those in the red coding, he said they had a lot of reported criminal activities, no respect of village by laws, poor sanitation, poor housing.

The colour coding, he said would also help in the provision of development funds.

He said they had received reports of the misuse of development funds in iTaukei villages and most of these villages fall in the red and some in the yellow coding.

The colour coding would also act as an inspiration for villages to work hard to go to the next category.

He said it was still in the discussion stage but it would be implemented in the near future.

The ministry has urged all the iTaukei villages to install their leaders as this would help in the overall leadership of a village.

“The ministry would be visiting villages and they had indicators to look for to decide which color coding the village should fall in.

“Good leadership in villages would be reflected in the general outlook of a village,” Mr Kurusiga said.

Mr Kurusiga said anyone could sense good and poor leadership by entering and seeing the state of an iTaukei village.

He said some critics have voiced their concerns on the new policy but they were not familiar with it.

Two chiefs from the Northern Division, Turaga Na Tui Macuata Ratu Wiliame Katonivere and Tui Wainunu Ratu Orisi Baleitavea said before the implementation of this policy, villages should be consulted.

In the draft village by-law, prepared by the Ministry of iTaukei Affairs and currently being circulated to all villages in accordance with Section 6 of the iTaukei Act Cap 120,

This by-law when enacted will:

(i) ensure that traditional leadership is upheld, respected and protected;

(ii) maintain law and order, harmonious and peaceful living in the village;

(iii) ensure that hygiene, sanitation and environmental standards are maintained;

(iv) to preserve, safeguard and strengthen leadership, culture, tradition and the vanua and to encourage community responsibility.

These according to Mr Kurusiga are some of the indicators that would be used for color coding.

The draft by-law also proposes for the establishment of sub-committees – accountability of the committees, health committee, law and order committee, child protection committee, culture committee, education committee, women’s committee, religious committees, committee for the elderly/ widowed and physically & mentally challenged persons, youth committees, Yaubula management support committee, finance/ development committee and community responsibility and work.

Part XIV – Laws Governing Health and Sanitation

Sanitation, drainage, rubbish disposal, tobacco ban, role of village residents in the tobacco ban, damages caused by stray animals, pet holders, rights of the victim, upkeep of village equipment and assets for improving village life and burial in the village compound

He said the draft by-laws when enacted and properly followed would really lift the lifestyle in all villages and at the same time would create a strong bond for the villagers and they would be more united in working to beautify their village.

The end result will be a step up in the colour coding.

For many villages they have very good support from those living outside. Many have formed committees and closely liaise with those back in the village to tell them the type of development they want for them to provide funding for.

Many of these villages now have electricity through diesel generators or solar.

Update on Village by-law

The iTaukei Affairs Board (iTAB) is now compiling all the submissions made from the 14 provinces regarding the village by-laws.

Permanent Secretary, Naipote Katonitabua, at the recent Kadavu Provincial Council meeting at Studio 6 in Suva said they had received submissions from religious, individuals and women’s group.

“Right now we are consolidating all the recommendations and we will wait for Government’s decision on the way forward regarding the village by-laws,” Mr Katonitabua said.

Challenges Faced

The 14 provincial council meetings support the village by-law.

The only challenge they faced was from the urban-dwellers as they have not submitted their comments and recommendations.

“Once we collect those, we will make some recommendations to Government.”

According to Mr Katonitabua there is no deadline right now for the village by-law.

A lot of consultation is still needed to be done.

“There will be a lot of recommendations for consultation. This is still the first round and we need more consultations on the ground,” Mr Katonitabua said.

The final decision for the village by-law will come from the Government.

 

 

Ministry of the iTaukei Affairs Village colour coding:

Villages will be categorised into three colours; green, yellow and red. The most developed villages would be in the green category, developing in yellow and the least developed red.

Villages with very little or no crime, good leadership, respect of the village by-laws, have installed leaders, good sanitation, have regular village meetings etc are coded green. For those in the red coding, they had a lot of reported criminal activities, no respect of village by laws, poor sanitation, poor housing.

 

 

Edited by Mohammed Ali

Feedback:  maikab@fijisun.com.fj

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