FIJI NEWS | NEWS

Government Wastes No Time Up North

A-G led the team of Cabinet Ministers taking medical supplies
19 Dec 2020 09:23
Government Wastes No Time Up North
Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum and Minister for Agriculture, Waterways and Environment inspect the damage done by Cyclone Yasa in Labasa on December 18, 2020. Photo: Leon Lord

A team of Government Ministers, doctors and security personnel hit the ground running when they landed in Labasa yesterday.

Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum led the team of Cabinet Ministers – Inia Seruiratu, Mahendra Reddy, Rosy Akbar – taking medical supplies up North onboard a Fiji Link and Northern Air flight. The team split up in Labasa and went to different areas to cover maximum ground in less time.

The North has been the hardest hit as Cyclone Yasa battered areas like Bua, Cakaudrove and Macuata provinces on Thursday night. It was heading towards Lomaiviti and then the Lau Group.

The Category 5 cyclone flattened hundreds of houses and schools, destroyed farm and livestock, damaged trees and roads, caused landslides and floods in its path.

By 3pm yesterday, Cyclone Yasa had weakened to a Category 3 and was moving out of Fiji waters.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum and the team of ministers were seen taking down details of those whose houses were destroyed and told them that help was on the way.

While a figure is yet to be confirmed, National Disaster Management Office Director, Vasiti Soko said the estimated damage was in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Tropical Cyclone Winston on February, 2016, cost $2.8 billion. The estimated cost of damage for Tropical Cyclone Harold in April this year was $100 million. The National Disaster Management Office will provide a brief on the situation after their team on the ground completes their assessment.

In Qeledamu, Labasa, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum and his delegation visited the farming community there.

With nothing to offer, farmer Pravin Singh quickly cut some coconuts for the visiting delegation.

Cyclone Yasa came with such intensity that it took all leaving only two of the corrugated iron roofing sheets of his home.

“I have never felt winds that intense in my life. I made the decision to take my wife and family to a place where he could be safe,” he said. Edited by

Feedback: shalveen.chand@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



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