SHIPPING

MV Uluinabukelevu Back After Five Months

Kadavu vessel MV Uluinabukelevu had to start from scratch when it resumed business last week. The tikina (district) Nabukelevu owned vessel vessel was dry docked for five months after one
24 Jan 2018 11:00
MV Uluinabukelevu Back After Five Months
MV Uluinabukelevu at Port Mua-i-Walu, Suva on January 22, 2018. Photo: Taraivini Seru

Kadavu vessel MV Uluinabukelevu had to start from scratch when it resumed business last week.

The tikina (district) Nabukelevu owned vessel vessel was dry docked for five months after one of its engines failed.

Tikina (district) Nabukelevu in Kadavu includes Daviqele, Dagai, Talaulia, Lomati, Nabukelevuira, Qalira, Nasau, Kabariki, Levuka, Muaninuku and Tabuya villages.

MV Uluinabukelevu with a capacity of 130 passengers only sails to Nabukelevu.

“The new part of the engine was bought from Germany and ordered through New Zealand, it cost $30, 000,” administration officer Bulou Nailevu Ms Nailevu said.

“Then it took months for the engine to arrive in the country,” she said.

“It was frustrating – there was no business for five months and that included the reason peak season.

“Not only had we lost out but also our fellow district members as they lost out on their yaqona, dalo and seaharvest sales.

“Then at the start of the school year we could not assist either as the people of Nabukelevu had to find other means to transport their harvest and catch to Suva.

“For all shipping services, the festive season is the peak period for business.

“We started operation last week Tuesday but we did not receive the expected customers,” she said.

Ms Nailevu said trainees were laid off work the company was not making any profit.

“Trainees were sent home because the company was not making any sales and the business was not making any money,” she said.

“However, permanent staff members were retained,” she added.

Ms Nailevu confirmed that MV Uluinabukelevu started providing services for the Lomaiviti group on Tuesday with affordable fares.

“It was frustrating – there was no business for five months and that included the reason peak season. Not only had we lost out but also our fellow district members as they lost out on their yaqona, dalo, seaharvest sales.”

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