NEWS

$485K Seawall Stops Nabitu Village From Being Washed Into Wainibokasi River

Villagers of Nabitu in Tailevu South no longer need to worry about having their village swallowed up by the Wainibokasi River. This follows the completion of the $485,000 seawall built
27 Sep 2017 11:22
$485K Seawall Stops Nabitu Village From Being Washed Into Wainibokasi River
Nananu Village Development Committee member Aporosa Vinaka (black shirt) explains the effects of rising sea level in the village, as Matani Tikina Isoa Manulevu looks on.

Villagers of Nabitu in Tailevu South no longer need to worry about having their village swallowed up by the Wainibokasi River.

This follows the completion of the $485,000 seawall built by the Government last year.

Nabitu Headman Ratu Luke Kamakorewa said previously when it was high tide and the waves came crashing in they ate away edges of the village boundary.

He said the coastal erosion taken away four houses that were situated on the Wainibokasi river bank.

“The changing weather patterns have affected our village and we have witnessed the washing away of land,” Mr Kamakorewa said.

“There were houses built on the side of the river bank with coconut and mango trees. All of those houses were destroyed due to erosion.”

He said the village had been experiencing erosion for about 10 to 15years up until last year when the sea wall project was completed.

“During the district meetings we took up our request letter for assistance and then they agreed to build a sea wall. Big boats come through this channel and passed our village and the waves eat away the village boundary,” he said.

Nabitu village headman Ratu Luke Kamakorewa standing beside the new sea wall along the Wainibokasi river on September 26, 2017. Photo: Fonua Talei

Nabitu village headman Ratu Luke Kamakorewa standing beside the new sea wall along the Wainibokasi river on September 26, 2017. Photo: Fonua Talei

He thanked the Government for ultimately saving Nabitu village from eroding into the Wainibokasi River.

Meanwhile villagers of Nananu in Tailevu North are feeling the full brunt of climate change as the village continues to flood during extreme high tide.

Namena district (tikina) representative Isoa Manulevu said weather patterns have worsened since the 1960s.

“We can feel the changing weather patterns especially for us who have experienced life as it was then,” Mr Manulevu said.

“From 1950s onwards we started to feel the changing weather patterns until the 2000s. In 1962 we could fish from our front door; we just take out our fishing lines and throw it from the inside of our houses and the sea levels reached our knees, which was the adverse weather patterns we experienced then.”

He said elders had built a makeshift barrier with piled rocks but that was of no use.

“When our elders built the sea wall back then they collected rocks and piled it against the houses which were right by the sea, before  the Government intervened and they reclaimed the land where the village presently sits,” he said.

“Last month our Prime Minister indicated that a sea wall will be built here at Nananu Village with help from China. They said it will start in November.”

Nananu village development committee member Aporosa Vinaka said any ideas of relocation would be hard to accept as it would split up the village.

Edited by karalaini Waqanidrola

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