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29th October

From the Editor-in-Chief’s desk: Your October 29 briefing

Bula vinaka everyone Cartoonist Jason Chatfield continues to amaze me with the little powerful reminders about the realities of life, and how we sometimes take things for granted. Today it was about growing up, and...

28th October

Stocks get reality check from earnings, central banks in focus

Global stocks eased from record peaks as a stark reminder of supply chain snags in corporate earnings reports stalled their rally, while investors also looked to whether central banks may consider tightening monetary policy earlier than thought. MSCI’s gauge of world stocks, ACWI, dipped 0.05% <.MIWD00000PUS> in early Thursday trade, with Japan’s Nikkei (.N225) leading the loss...

Osborne: Awareness on cancer should be an everyday occurrence

Nadi entrepreneur Jennie Osborne says awareness on cancer should be an everyday occurrence. During a Pinktober event with members of The People’s Alliance West team recently, Ms Osbourne recalled the challenges she went through while caring for her mother who passed away from the disease. She said she was one of those who were forced to learn about looking after a loved one with...

Singapore looking into unusual surge after record COVID-19 cases

Singapore’s health ministry said it is looking into an “unusual surge” in infections after the city-state reported 5,324 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, the most since the beginning of the pandemic. Singapore also recorded 10 new deaths from the disease on Wednesday, taking the toll to 349. “The infection numbers are unusually high today,...

Earning with orchids

Tthirty-four women from the Model Town Charity Trust’s (MTCT) Koroipita Community received training on how to grow and manage an orchid nursery at South Sea Orchids in Nadi yesterday. The training came in the wake of a recent partnership between the Australian Government’s Business Partnership Platform (BPP), South Sea Orchids (SSO), Floriculture Support Association (FSA)...

Unaisi overcomes battle with breast cancer

Unaisi Lekenaua clinged to her faith in God and her favourite Bible verse in Psalm 23:4 as she was wheeled into the operating theatre at the Labasa Hospital. The retired schoolteacher said Psalm 23:4 “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me, your rod and your staff they comfort me” gave her the strength...

Boeing shares down slightly on 787, Starliner costs

Boeing Co (BA.N) reported a quarterly net loss after fresh charges on its problem-plagued 787 and Starliner spacecraft programs, masking a small underlying profit as air travel recovers from the pandemic. The 737 MAX and 787 are integral to Boeing’s ability to rebound from the pandemic and a safety scandal caused by two fatal crashes, while its...

Accused further remanded

A man who allegedly stabbed his 21-year-old de facto partner to death has been further remanded in custody. Sivaniolo Vunakece is charged with one count of murder. He appeared before magistrate Waleen George at the Suva Magistrates Court yesterday. The police prosecutor objected to bail on the basis that the offence was indictable in nature....

World Bank halts Sudan operations in blow to coup leaders, strike calls gain support

The World Bank halted disbursements for operations in Sudan on Wednesday in response to the military’s seizure of power from a transitional government, while state oil company workers, doctors and pilots joined civilian groups opposing the takeover. Thousands of people have taken to the streets since Monday’s coup led by armed forces chief General Abdel...

Man cops 14 years for rape

The High Court in Lautoka jailed a man for 14 years and seven months for raping a 14-year-old girl in July, 2019. Justice Thushara Rajasinghe said in his October 13 ruling that the man, who was the victim’s step-uncle, had breached the trust of the girl. “Instead of caring and looking after this small, young...

Fong: Fijians can receive jabs at 6-week intervals

Fijians can choose to receive the second dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at an interval of six weeks after the first dose, says Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr James Fong. “Any person aged 18 years and above who has received the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine can receive the second dose after an...

Biden vows to stand with Asia on freedom, hits at China on Taiwan

President Joe Biden told Southeast Asian nations on Wednesday the United States would stand with them in defending freedom of the seas and democracy and called China’s actions towards Taiwan “coercive” and a threat to peace and stability. Speaking at a virtual East Asia Summit attended by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, Biden said Washington would...

South Korea and U.S. held disarmament, non-proliferation consultation -State Dept

The United States and South Korea held a disarmament and non-proliferation consultation on Tuesday, the U.S. State Department said. U.S. Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security Bonnie Jenkins and Republic of Korea Deputy Foreign Minister for Multilateral and Global Affairs Ham Sang-wook held the consultation in Washington D.C. on Oct. 26, the State...

Family loses all in house fire

A family in Volivoli, Rakiraki will have a bleak Diwali this year after their two-bedroom house was destroyed by fire on Tuesday night. Homeowner Praveen Reddy and his family were away at a neighbour’s house when the blaze began about 8pm. “My wife and two children had gone to a religious gathering when we were...

CAAF cautions public on fireworks use

The Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji (CAAF) states it is prohibited for anyone to operate fireworks within five kilometres of the Nadi and Nausori airports and within 3km of any domestic airport. However, CAAF stated fireworks could be used during the Hindu festival of lights, known as Diwali, between 5pm and 11pm on November 3...

U.S., Turkish presidential advisers discuss defense relationship, disagreements

Top advisers to U.S. President Joe Biden and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan spoke on Wednesday about defense issues and how to resolve disagreements, the White House said, days after Turkey’s leader threatened to expel U.S. and other ambassadors. Erdogan over the weekend ordered 10 envoys to be declared “persona non grata” for seeking the release...

Nadi Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Dr Ram Raju. Picture: FT FILE

‘Firecrackers have no Diwali significance’

Firecrackers have no significance in terms of celebrating the Hindu festival of lights known as Diwali, says Nadi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) president Dr Ram Raju. In a statement, Dr Raju said firecrackers were “a total waste of hard earned money”. “Indulging in the use of firecrackers is sheer madness, especially at this...

Gun not thoroughly checked before Alec Baldwin fired fatal shot

A .45-caliber Colt pistol used on the set of the film “Rust” was not thoroughly checked before being given to actor Alec Baldwin, who fired a live lead bullet in an accidental fatal shooting last week in New Mexico, according to officials and a new court filing. New details about the incident emerged on Wednesday...

Ratu Wiliame Katonivere completes quarantine period

President elect Ratu Wiliame Katonivere has been released from quarantine and has resumed duties at his Macuata Holdings office today. Ratu Wiliame said he was happy to be back but could not give any interviews yet. Many public members greeted him in town as he stepped out for lunch. Ratu Wiliame was kept in home...

Foundation work for school completed

Foundation work for the new Lekutu Secondary School in Bua has been completed, says Australian Defence Force (ADF) contingent commander and senior project engineer Major Donald Robertson. He said the ADF and the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) engineering teams had completed all the foundation work, including the concrete footing, sub-floor block work and...

Backtracks: Taking music to the next level

Sauma Masidilo developed a passion for singing at a very tender age while growing up in his village of Vatulele, Wailei, in the province of Cakaudrove in the 90s. And his interest in music was inspired and nurtured by his grandfather. His grandfather was part of the village’s very popular sigidrigi group that used to...

U.S. issues first passport with ‘X’ gender marker

WASHINGTON, Oct 27 (Reuters) – The U.S. State Department said on Wednesday it had issued the first American passport with an “X” gender marker, designed to give nonbinary, intersex and gender-nonconforming people a marker other than male or female on their travel document, according to a statement. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced in June...

People: Lawyer up for top awards

Lautoka human rights lawyer Sabrina Khan-Sharma has been nominated by the United Kingdom’s Lead5050 judging panel for two awards — 2021 Mentor of the Year and 2021 Champion of the Year. The renowned human rights champion said she made a decision to help marginalised single mothers in Fiji because of her experiences as a victim...

Nine-year-old from Lakeba is latest drowning victim

A nine-year-old child from Tubou, Lakeba is believed to be the country’s latest drowning victim. According to police, the incident which occurred earlier this week is being investigated by officers at the Lakeba Police Station. The victim was missing from home and a search was conducted whereby his body was found floating near the foreshore...

ADF hails RFMF

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) team conducting building works at the Lekutu Secondary School in Bua has hailed the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) for its innovative skills. Lieutenant Jake Finnane, the ADF troop commander and site engineer, said the Fijian method of bending steel reinforcement bars had cut work time down by 50...

Top U.S. general confirms ‘very concerning’ Chinese hypersonic weapons test

The top officer, General Mark Milley, has provided the first official U.S. confirmation of a Chinese hypersonic weapons test that military experts say appears to show Beijing’s pursuit of an Earth-orbiting system designed to evade American missile defenses. The Pentagon has been at pains to avoid direct confirmation of the Chinese test this summer, first...

Back in time! Top trainer for Ve

The boxing fraternity was abuzz with news that Fiji’s “Golden Boy” and boxing idol Sakaraia Ve was to be trained by one of Australia’s leading trainers, Jack Rennie. A report was published in The Fiji Times on December 17, 1981. According to the article, Rennie — who had already trained a world boxing title winner...

Moderna COVID shot could be used in U.S. children, teens within weeks, CEO says

Moderna Inc’s (MRNA.O) COVID-19 vaccine could start to be used in children and teens in the United States within weeks, its chief executive said in an interview ahead of the Reuters Total Health conference, which will run virtually from Nov. 15-18. Moderna CEO Staphane Bancel said based on dialogue with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, he...

Teacher unions: ‘Guideline creating confusion’

The two teacher unions said it was imperative for Education Minister Premila Kumar to clarify her statement on the reopening of schools. Ms Kumar had said earlier that there was no “no jab, no school” policy. She had said that all students would be welcomed back to school, even if they opted not to get...

COVID-19 awareness program for students

The Education Ministry has advised school heads and faculty that Year 12 examinations will be held from January 18 to January 28 and Year 13 exams will be held from January 17 to January 27. And according to a circular from Education Ministry permanent secretary Dr Anjeela Jokhan, Year 12 and 13 students will undergo...

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