Opinion

Letters To The Editor: 3rd February, 2019

The recent landslide at Dilkusha, Nausori, has reminded us once again to be proactive and identify the hot spots where there are a high chance of mudslides occurring that may result in serious consequences with the view to eliminate such risks.
03 Feb 2019 11:39
Letters To The Editor: 3rd February, 2019

Landslide threat

Satish Nakched, Suva

The recent landslide at Dilkusha, Nausori, has reminded us once again to be proactive and identify the hot spots where there are a high chance of mudslides occurring that may result in serious consequences with the view to eliminate such risks.

I believe this responsibility falls squarely on the Fiji Roads Authority and the municipality to monitor.

Deforestation is one of the major contributors and is happening at an alarming rate and, even though everyone knows it, there are no tangible actions taken as a preventative approach to this problem.

Edinburgh Drive in Suva is one area of concern for public safety as this very busy road runs along the foot of the steep slopes against the backdrop of the cliff that sticks out at a ninety- degree angle.

The cliff is mostly soapstone covered with a thin layer of mud.

Edinburgh Drive is about three kilometres of an inclining stretch, which is arguably the busiest drive in the country.

During a weekday off peak period a survey was conducted and there were more than two thousand vehicles, including buses, either entering or exiting this portion of the drive in a span of 60 minutes and the exposure rate will increase tenfold in peak time.

However, the potential danger there is increasing every day because of the increased rate of farming on the slopes of the Edinburgh Drive.

Gone are the trees which helped stop soil erosion and the subject area is now covered with root crops.

The root crops which are frequently harvested disintegrate and weaken the soil and because of the very steep nature of the slope a major landslide may occur which will cause a lot of damage, cut out the major route to the city and can also result in fatality.

There is evidence of soil erosion and small landslides which occur frequently during a heavy downpour. Just recently a few trees were felled to extend the farming area.

The native trees with huge roots have been replaced with subsistence farming that increases the risk factor.

Another threat is the constant heavy vehicles that use the road, which causes increased earth vibration and weakens the foundation of the rocks.

Efforts should be made to rehabilitate the slopes by planting trees and enforcing policies that discourage the planting of root crops on slopes.

This has to be implemented immediately in order to saves lives and an arboriculturist must be hired so professional advice can be given on the cultivation, and management, of individual trees, shrubs, vines, and other perennial woody plants which could be planted on the Edinburgh Drive slopes.

 

Exercise regularly

Spencer Robinson, Suva

It’s always been a positive sign to observe at Albert Park, Suva, being occupied during the afternoon by many people, young and old doing outdoor activities such as touch rugby, volleyball, exercising and simply taking a walk along the premises all for a good cause to staying fit and healthy.

A similar observation is evident along the Nasese foreshore via Queen Elizabeth Drive.

Usually you would see people taking a walk or jog along this spectacular route as sunset nears.

In an effort to curb rising illnesses relating to NCDs the Government should continue its initiative in establishing more quality parks around Fiji to facilitate these outdoor activities.

All in all, let us support one another in exercising regularly and, of course, eating sensibly and healthy.

 

Drug Tests

Amrit Singh, Nausori

A lot of drugs-related problems are happening in Fiji now.

It is high time that a law is passed in Fiji making it compulsory for secondary school students to have a once a year drug test done in schools. Every year nurses visit primary schools for dental and health checks and give minors mandatory injections, but once a child reaches secondary school the nurses hardly come by.

Only if there is a blood donation drive then the medical teams are seen at secondary schools.

It makes me uneasy to learn that so many secondary students at a very naive age are using illegal drugs.

I hope in future a law is passed so that nurses and doctors visit high schools to do drug tests.

A healthy nation is a wealthy nation. Health is wealth!

 

Fiji Airways men’s 7s

Simon Hazelman, Savusavu

As the most successful rugby sevens team in the world, I’m finding it hard to understand why the Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) has not taken total advantage of this success?

With our unorthodox style of play and passing and offloads, the “Flying Fijians” are in a great position to generate great influence and wealth.

The future of our sevens rugby can easily be securely funded and equipped if we make some serious changes to the current set-up.

The issue here is an obvious one in that those at FRU just do not have the expertise or the outside confidence to run an efficient and productive rugby organisation.

It’s only when FRU gets its act together and sets up a professional rugby sevens outfit with professional, trustworthy personnel that our sevens rugby will receive unlimited support.

The priority here is the welfare and support for the players who sacrifice everything to light us up on the world stage.

They are the ones who ought to be rewarded in every way possible during and after their playing days.

 

Fiji awarded by India

Amenatave Yaconisau, Delainavesi

I welcome the sustainable award by the Energy and Resources Institute of India to Fiji.

Though the PM will not be present because of parliamentary engagement, this is in recognition of his COP23 Presidency. Congratulations!

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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