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It Was The Strongest Cyclone We Experienced: Village Headman

The morning Tropical Cyclone Gita hit Motokana in Ono-i-Lau, a family clung to each other and prayed for safety as the cyclone ravaged their home. They managed to take shelter
25 Feb 2018 17:21
It Was The Strongest Cyclone We Experienced: Village Headman
Village headman Josefa Nadovo Photo: Nacanieli Tuilevuka

The morning Tropical Cyclone Gita hit Motokana in Ono-i-Lau, a family clung to each other and prayed for safety as the cyclone ravaged their home.

They managed to take shelter at the village church.

There were 10 people who took shelter in the church including a two-year-old child.

They were protected from the onslaught of destructive winds of up to 100km per hour, the strongest cyclone, to ever hit Ono-i-Lau.

Six houses were damaged at Motokana by TC Gita. Three were partially damaged and three were completely damaged.

Litia Sere, 30, said she and her two chil­dren left their home on Monday (February 12) evening to take shelter at the church.

“My two children were frightened and cry­ing, all I could do was to comfort them,” she said.

“For seven hours during the cyclone, they were clinging on to me and crying.

“I felt sorry for them and all I did was pray,” she said.

Village headman Josefa Nadovo 58 said he has never experienced a cyclone as strong as TC Gita.

“We were listening over the radio for weather updates,” Mr Ledua said.

“We were prepared for the cyclone; seven evacuation centres were active in the vil­lage on Monday.

“Men cut down trees, temporary shutters were put up, food stored and flashlights and candles were ready.

“After our preparation for the cyclone, all we could do was pray-asking God for His protection.

“Winston did not hit us; this is the strong­est cyclone that I have ever experienced.

“The cyclone hit us on Tuesday, there were strong winds and heavy rain here at Mato­kana.

“From the stories we heard, it was a lesson learnt for us.

“We heard rattling sound, rain falling on roofs and witnessed a house taken down to the ground by the cyclone,” he said.

Edited by Mohammed Zulfikar

Feedback: nacanieli.tuilevuka@fijisun.com.fj

 

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