News

20th January

Call for cassava farmers to partner with association

There is a call for farmers to partner with the Tavioka Growers Association if they want to use their land to the fullest. This was the sentiments shared by the president of the association Josaia...

Viqa: Poor drainage a serious concern

Poor drainage has led to poor road conditions at the Yalava flats in Kavanagasau, Sigatoka. Resident Ifereimi Viqa said heavy downpour would flood the road causing major maintenance works for vehicle owners. He said the road had now become a one-way road because of poor drainage. “The issue is with drainage. Even now the road...

Billion dollar market

In the next four years cassava flour could be in the vicinity of $US4 billion ($F8.1b market whereas cassava starch could be a $US42b ($F85.3b) industry however Fiji has not tapped into this yet. These were the sentiments of the president of the Tavioka Growers Association Josaia Rayawa, who said these were two value- ads...

Resident up in arms over road conditions

A resident in Valelevu, Nasinu is up in arms over the deplorable road conditions in front of his house. Vinay Dutt, 21, said the potholes in front of his house at Naveiwakau Rd in Valelevu has become so bad that he was no longer worried about the welfare of his car but the safety of...

Potholes a ‘nuisance’

Potholes in Naroro Village in Sigatoka have become a “nuisance” for carrier drivers. Resident Gurmeet Singh had to fork out extra money from his daily income to repair his damaged tyres. He said some roads up the Valley Rd were causing a lot of maintenance work for their vehicles. “One of the tyres got damaged...

19th January

DPP hopes to improve quality of evidence within police docket

Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Christopher Pryde is hoping to improve the quality of the evidence within the police docket. In his address at the Fiji Police Force Command Group Retreat at the Pearl Resort in Deuba, Mr Pryde said he was concerned with the conduct of some police officers during caution interviews where police...

First day back at school

It’s that time of the year again, when our students go back to school around the country. As we send our children off to school today, perhaps it is apt that we reflect on the year that was, and look forward with optimism this year. Let’s make it a positive term one for our children....

‘Stop enabling bad officers’

“We should stop enabling bad officers.” This was the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions Christopher Pryde while addressing at the Fiji Police Force Command Group Retreat at the Pearl Resort in Deuba. Mr Pryde said each month the DPP office publishes statistics on the filing of indictable officers including police officers and the...

$5k to $10k a day from drugs

Local drug traffickers were making between $5000 and $10,000 a day from the sale of cocaine and methamphetamine in the domestic market, says Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Christopher Pryde. He highlighted this while speaking at the Fiji Police Force Command Group Retreat at the Pearl Resort in Deuba, Mr Pryde said illicit drug activities...

Taxidriver lambasts police officers for lacklustre efforts

A taxidriver has lambasted the lacklustre efforts of police officers in detaining one of two passengers he picked up for fare evasion. Jaintesh Nath, 28, said apart from letting the suspect go, he claimed he was also verbally abused by an officer and told not to waste the officer’s time. “I had picked up the...

New lease of life for man

On January 17, 1976 The Fiji Times published a story about an old man who was helped by a businessman and the Lautoka Lions Club. He was a lost man … his dreams were shattered … his hopes destroyed … he told himself that he wanted to die. Somewhere inside his being there was conflict...

Ministry to launch e-services app

The Ministry of Local Government will soon launch the My Council App, said the minister, Premila Kumar in Nadi. She told members of the Nadi Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Saturday that the App was the result of serving Fijian citizens and businesses in the new environment created by COVID-19. “During this pandemic, we...

Biman: Survival of tourism at stake

The survival of our tourism industry is at stake, says National Federation Party (NFP) leader Professor Biman Prasad. He said if we waited much longer, our hotels and other infrastructure would collapse and would not be ready to receive tourists when the global crisis ends. Prof Prasad said Fiji needed a “bubble” with New Zealand...

Concerns raised on future of school leavers

University of Fiji acting vice-chancellor Professor Shaista Shameem has raised concerns on the future of school leavers, with TSLB reducing the number of awards given out. “Parents are concerned whether they will be able to even send their children to school and with TSLB having fewer awards given out now, our concern is what will...

Oil companies, aid groups plan to press Biden to allow Venezuela fuel swaps

(Reuters) – Representatives of fuel suppliers to Venezuela, importers of Venezuelan oil and advocacy groups said this month they plan to press the incoming administration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden to reverse a ban on crude-for-diesel swaps. The Trump administration since the last quarter of 2020 has barred companies from sending Venezuela diesel in exchange...

Kumar: Councils have been bullied

Municipal councils have been bullied in the past, says Minister for Local Government Premila Kumar. She said her Ministry was trying to change this. “Gone are the days when there is any issue, go to the municipal council, give waiver on this, give waiver on that, we will not increase the rent,” she said. “I...

Revocation of respective logging licences

Sawmillers in Vanua Levu harvesting pine in overplanted areas may have their licences revoked after Fiji Pine Ltd, through their lawyers, demanded for such action. This was made known in a letter addressed to the Ministry of Forestry and handed out to landowners during a meeting in Labasa yesterday. The letter, from Young and Associates...

Call to commend teachers for their commitment

Teacher in STC Yasa-affected schools should be commended for their commitment in preparing facilities for the new academic term. The Fiji Teachers Union general secretary Agni Deo Singh said such commitment reflected the teachers’ dedication in ensuring that students received the best this academic year. “Some teachers are staying in tents as well because the...

Owners of the pine industry

Fiji Pine Ltd’s chief executive Vimlesh Kumar has reiterated that landowners are owners of the industry. He gave this reassurance after a meeting held in Labasa yesterday between landowners and the Ministry of Forestry officials over the overplanted areas, which the landowners had refused to release. However, the company maintains that these resources belong to...

Landowners take company to court

Pine landowners in Bua have called on Fiji Pine Ltd to “back off” after they refused to release 268.27 hectares of overplanted area for the company to harvest. As a result, the Bua Pine Landowners Association has engaged a legal counsel for legal proceedings against the company. The four districts – Dama, Bua, Lekutu and...

Teachers reminded to reaffirm commitment

Teachers have been reminded to reaffirm their commitment to supporting the educational excellence of students. Education Minister Rosy Akbar in welcoming the students to the beginning of the new academic year said 5794 young Fijians would begin their formal learning journey at an Early Childhood Education centre and 7159 would leave the education system at...

U.S. asks Australia to scrap proposed laws to make Facebook, Google pay for news

SYDNEY (Reuters) – The U.S. government has asked Australia to scrap proposed laws that will make it the first country in the world to force Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google to pay for news sourced from local media outlets. In a submission asking the government to “suspend” the plans, assistant U.S. trade representatives Daniel...

Pre-COVID curriculum

All schools have been advised to follow pre-COVID-19 curriculum when classes start today. In a circular sent to all heads of schools on January 13, Ministry of Education permanent secretary Dr Angela Jokhan states the 2021 school year will follow the pre-COVID-19 curriculum. “School heads must bring this to the attention of teachers and students...

Grandmother braves scorching sun to sell produce for school

Miliana Bucere yesterday braved the scorching sun walking around Nakasi neighbourhood to sell her produce. The 58-year-old woman said this was the only way she could earn money and buy her children’s and grandchildren’s school stationery. “I cannot afford to transport produce to Laqere or the Nausori market after we were told to move,” she...

PM addresses students

Every hour they study, learn and expand their minds is an investment in Fiji’s success as a country, says Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama in his address to the students of Fiji as they prepare for the start of the new school year. “Every school we reopen is a victory for our country. Every student who...

Man struggles to buy stationery

Sanit Lal, a sickly man in Wailea, Vatuwaqa could not afford to buy his children’s stationery and new pairs of uniforms this year. He said, he didn’t want to upset his children this year, but unfortunately he wasn’t able to sell enough fish which he sells in the market. And because of that, the father...

Germany regrets U.S. decision to sanction Russian vessel involved in Nord Stream 2

BERLIN (Reuters) – The United States has informed Germany that it plans to impose sanctions on a Russian pipe-laying ship involved in construction of the Russian-led Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, the German Economy Ministry said on Monday. “We’re taking note of the announcement with regret,” an Economy Ministry spokesman in...

Island school defers classes

Galoa Island Primary School has deferred classes by two-days because of their current water crisis. Headteacher Rishi Ram told this newspaper that was essential for the school and the students. He said without water the school could not get children into the hostel. “The only thing holding us back is water, which still cannot reach...

Civil servants on full pay in arrears

Civil servants whose salaries were not “docked’ as an impact of COVID-19 are among those who have not paid town rates, says Local Government Minister, Premila Kumar. She said this included teachers, police officers and nurses. Mrs Kumar said this was made known after a thorough rates profiling that was carried out in all municipal...

Guatemalan military clears U.S.-bound migrant caravan from road

VADO HONDO, Guatemala (Reuters) – Guatemalan security forces on Monday cleared a road of hundreds of people in a mostly Honduran migrant caravan that had camped out overnight when authorities barred it from advancing toward the United States. The Guatemalan government said the road in the eastern part of the country reopened to traffic after...

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