Opinion

Editorial: Let’s Continue To Pray For Australia

According to Academic, Joseph Veramu, Fiji should continue to push Australia to adopt more proactive climate change policies.He has suggested that perhaps the Fiji Red Cross or Government can organise a national public appeal for donations to help rural Australians who have had their homes destroyed.
07 Jan 2020 13:04
Editorial: Let’s Continue To Pray For Australia

As we watch the bushfire devastation, terror and death rage across Australia over the past weeks, one cannot help but seek divine intervention over Australia and its people.

Every Fijian has some sort of connection with Australia. We either have a family or friend who resides in the land down under.

With experts predicting that Australians will have to endure another two months of terror, let’s hope and pray there will be rain to help put out the fires.

But so far hundreds of homes have been destroyed and millions of animals killed. And the death toll continues to rise.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on the weekend that the country’s Defence Force Reserves will be deployed to fire zones.

The Australian Navy’s largest ship, HMAS Adelaide will assist in coastal evacuations and AU$20 million is committed for four extra planes to be used in case state premiers request their use.

Across the Tasman Sea in Auckland, New Zealand, the evidence of the Australian bushfires has turned the sky orange as smoky haze drifts across.

The Kiwis have announced that they will assist with three Royal New Zealand Air Force NH90 helicopters and crew, two NZ Army Combat Engineer Sections and a command element to support the Australian Defence Force efforts.

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape yesterday said if needed, PNG will deploy a combined force of 1000 PNG soldiers and firefighters.

Still fresh in the minds of climate and some national leaders is the inaction by Australia during the December 2019 COP25 in Madrid.

German media reported that Australia was identified as one of three nations responsible for spoiling any chance of securing a meaningful outcome.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, after the COP25 session, had also expressed his disappointment.

The situation is a rather complex one for Fiji. While we value the Vuvale Partnership inked last year, Fiji remains concerned about Australia’s inaction towards global climate initiatives.

Prime Minister Morrison has come across as being simplistic and out of touch with the realities of climate change.

He has reiterated that Australia’s climate change policies are “sensible” and the fires, “will continue to go on until we can get some decent rain that can deal with some of the fires that have been burning for many, many months.”

So, what can Fiji do?

According to Academic, Joseph Veramu, Fiji should continue to push Australia to adopt more proactive climate change policies.

He has suggested that perhaps the Fiji Red Cross or Government can organise a national public appeal for donations to help rural Australians who have had their homes destroyed.

Because bush fires require firefighters who have experience and a certain level of competency, some have suggested that we could send medical personnel or volunteers for the evacuation centres.

But for now, let’s continue to pray for Australia.

Feedback: rosi.doviverata@fijisun.com.fj



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