Help On The Way For Lau Group

He added that the government was working with donor friends and partners to provide bottled drink­ing water for the island affected.
20 Jan 2022 12:02
 Help On The Way For Lau Group
Acting Prime Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum. Photo: Office of the Attorney-General

Help is on the way for islands affected by tidal surges in the Lau group.

This was after Acting Prime Min­ister and Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum announced the Government’s co-ordinated relief response that would depart for the Lau group tonight.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said the MV Iloilovatu and MV Veivueti will de­part for the Lau Group, funded by DFAT, to provide immediate relief supplies and conduct needs assess­ments in communities most affect­ed by the tidal surges.

He said the team would be led by ministers Jone Usamate and Ifer­emi Waqainabete and assistant ministers Jale Sigarara and Selai Adimaitoga. Minister for Disaster Management Inia Seruiratu said based on the information received through the i-taukei affairs, the de­ployment would be targeting six is­lands that were considered as more affected than others.

“This does not mean that we will leave out the rest; we prioritise our efforts when it comes to assessment and of course to relieve assistance as well,” Mr Seruiratu said.

“We are targeting six islands and as alluded to earlier; there are two teams planned and 20+ members per team. Team one is taking upper Lau which is Ono-i-Lau, Vatoa and Moce while team two covers Moala, Vanuabalavu and Lakeba.”

He added that the cost of deploy­ment was more than $200, 000.

“We are looking at six days deploy­ment as one day per island for each of the teams and three days sailing time. We have some limited infor­mation on the extent of the dam­ages in the islands and that is why we are sending our teams to assess on the islands.”

He added that the government was working with donor friends and partners to provide bottled drink­ing water for the island affected.

Health teams

Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete said the two teams would have four medical personnel each.

“One team consists of a senior physician from Lautoka and the other team consists of a senior emergency physician from Suva who will be leading the health teams. There are also health in­spectors going with the teams be­cause we want to after a week since the eruptions there are noticing some health effects now.”


Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Major General Ro Jone Kalouniwai said they are de­ploying 25 RFMF personnel to the islands affected in the Lau group.

This he said was in support of the Government and Commissioner Eastern team to assist in the assess­ment, water and ration support and the survey of the extent of dam­ages.

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