NATION

Navuetaki: We Stand By The Govt

  Turaga ni Mataqali Wainituru of Nauouo Village, Ovalau, Inoke Navuetaki, 66, has acknowledged the Bainimarama Government for fulfilling their wish. Mataqali Wainituru are legal custodians of the 82 acres
02 Aug 2018 10:00
Navuetaki: We Stand By The Govt
Inoke Navuetaki, seventh from left, with Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama after touring new homes at Nauouo Village, Ovalau. Photo: Manhar Vithal

 

Turaga ni Mataqali Wainituru of Nauouo Village, Ovalau, Inoke Navuetaki, 66, has acknowledged the Bainimarama Government for fulfilling their wish.

Mataqali Wainituru are legal custodians of the 82 acres of land on which 22 homes are erected and is occupied by 119 villagers.

Mr Navuetaki relayed to the Fiji Sun the long road they took to have the land returned to them.

He said that during the Colonial period, they were under the Vanua ’o Cawaci, but then Cawaci was sold by the then Tui Levuka.

This forced the villagers to move to the current location of Nauouo Village.

“We moved here after the mataqali na kai Naro moved to Natokalau to the Tui Yaro,” Mr Navuetaki said.

Thus the land was vacant and was demarcated as a red zone under the colonial Government. Their forefathers leased the area in 1923.

“We built our hall in 1976, where I told myself that I will ask around and get this land returned to us,” Mr Navuetaki added.

“Since then I have been following it up.”

Mr Navuetaki said he had been knocking on the Government’s doors since 1976.

According to him, in 2013 a delegation from the village visited the Prime Minister with Alipate Qetaki (the then TLTB general manager) to return the land to them to lease.

In 2015 it was gazetted to them and then in 2016, after the devastation by Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston, the homes in the village were rebuilt.

“This sequence of events cannot be ignored and it is big and we thank him for giving this to us and this is part of us. We will be there to assist and support the Bainimarama Government.”

Mr Navuetaki said immediately after STC Winston struck in February 2016, the Prime Minister visited Koro Island and he came to Nauouo Village during his tour of Ovalau.

“He said you will get the houses rebuilt he assured us,” he said.

“I am thankful to the Government for everything we have now. We stand by the PM’s side and will definitely be available to assist the Government.”

Edited by Epineri Vula

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