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Corruption will not be tolerated as cyclone recovery begins: Fiji PM

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by April 13, 2018 Pacific News, Regional News

SUVA, 12 APRIL 2018 (FBC NEWS) —Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has warned government officials that corruption and abuse of authority will not be tolerated.

In a briefing with the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) today , PM  Bainimarama highlighted that in previous disasters corruption was evident.

Bainimarama said in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Keni some families are crying foul that they have not been assisted.

“In the past and again in this disaster, there’s a lot of abuse of authority by government officials and people looking after rations and water, like for instance I’ve been receiving calls that water trucks have been bypassing homes, that’s abuse of authority, we can’t afford that really.”

Bainimarama reiterated while there is a need to constantly remind the relevant agencies, the responsibility will fall on the divisional heads to ensure this practise is squashed.

“The Commissioners, the DO’s (District Officers), anybody who’s in government,” he said.

Bainimarama also called on those families in evacuation centres to ensure their homes are liveable before they return.

Close to 200 Fijians continue to take refuge in evacuation centres as the clean-up and resettlement continue.

Meanwhile, over 40 homes in Kadavu are completely damaged, while 179 partially damage from the cyclone Keni.

National Disaster Management Office Director, Anare Leweniqila, confirmed this while briefing the Prime Minister on the current situation in Kadavu.

Leweniqila said these numbers will increase as assessments are ongoing in other parts of the Island.

“We are receiving some initial reports from the island, the reports indicates that the island is severely affected and we are going to mobilize a team probably on Saturday consisting of officials from various agencies who are responsible for relief and response.”

Leweniqila confirmed various governments departments will leave for Kadavu this Saturday to do further assessments.

The Red Cross Emergency team is taking a total of 2,000 purification tablets to Kadavu.

Manager Operations, Eseroma Ledua, said they have received numerous reports from non-governmental organisations that the villagers are facing water problems on the island.

“There is a team of four emergency response and volunteers supported by the Pacific Flying Lab in USP who will be supporting us in getting Arial view and Ariel picture to support us in our operations. Actually we have a preposition container based in Kadavu, it has non-food items stock ready for distribution.”

The team will be on the island for the next 10 days to conduct assessments and distribute items.

These items include dignity kits, shelter tool kits, tarpaulins and blankets…..PACNEWS

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