Local News

‘Surge in violence expected’

Renowned local psychologist Selina Kuruleca says Fiji could expect an increase in domestic violence cases because of the socio-economic impact caused by COVID-19. She said reduced working hours, loss of income, uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and...

Psychologist urges students to ask for help

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has come to the rescue of four Dawasamu Secondary School teachers who were warned of a deduction in salary if they continued to report late to school. School principal Joeli Matea said the warning to the teachers who lived in Suva were from the Education Ministry’s Human Resources Department. He said...

PM to the rescue

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has come to the rescue of four Dawasamu Secondary School teachers who were warned of a deduction in salary if they continued to report late to school. School principal Joeli Matea said the warning to the teachers who lived in Suva were from the Education Ministry’s Human Resources Department. He said...

Marijuana found in school

A school principal from Dawasamu, Tailevu yesterday informed Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama that marijuana was found in the school. Tomasi Seru, the principal of Navunisea District School, revealed this while pleading for help with the building of a school fence. He said after the discovery of the drugs, a team of officers from the Fiji...

Senior officers charged for alleged assault

The officer-in-charge of Tavua and Vatukoula police stations and the station officer of Vatukoula Police Station are among eight officers who have been charged for the alleged assault on two brothers in Tavua. Director of Public Prosecutions Christopher Pryde yesterday sanctioned 24 charges on the eight who will be produced in the Tavua Magistrates Court...

Police monitor school students at Suva bus station

Students who usually catch the bus from the Suva Bus Stand have been reminded to go straight home and not to loiter around the bus stand after school hours. Police through an announcement made on the intercom system said no student was to be found around the bus station area after 4.30pm. Students were told...

Australia to release most from COVID-19 high-rise lockdown despite surge

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia’s second-most populous state will relax restrictions on many of the 3,000 people locked down in nine public-housing towers despite surging numbers of COVID-19 cases, state premier Daniel Andrews said on Thursday. Victoria state on Saturday confined residents of the towers in their homes amid a spike in COVID-19 cases, prompting widespread...

Gruesome killing: Farming community traumatised by event

Residents of a small farming community in Sigatoka are still reeling from the gruesome killing of a 53-year-old woman, allegedly hacked to death by a man on Wednesday morning. The woman’s 14-year-old daughter was also allegedly attacked in the tragedy at Kabisi and has been admitted to the Lautoka Hospital. Neighbour James Daven Prasad and...

COVID-19: Quarantine period for returning Fijian soldiers to end this weekend

The 14 days COVID-19 quarantine period for 162 Fijian soldiers who arrived from Sinai late last month will be completed this weekend. This has been confirmed by acting PS for the Ministry of Health and Medical Services Dr James Fong at a press conference this afternoon. He said the soldiers were under quarantine in a...

July trial date for man alleged to have raped stepdaughter

A 40-year-old man who is alleged to have raped and sexually assaulted his 15-year-old stepdaughter had his bail extended by the High Court in Suva today. He is charged with six counts of rape and two counts of sexual assault. State lawyer Sheenal Swastika told the court that the prosecution was ready for the trial....

COVID-19: Fiji records additional five border control cases

Fiji has five more border quarantine confirmed cases of COVID-19 taking the total to eight now. The five new cases were confirmed by Ministry of Health acting permanent secretary Dr James Fong in a press conference this afternoon. All eight cases are border quarantine cases and all patients are in stable condition. Dr Fong added...

Stoeckel: Containment of COVID-19 puts Fiji in a strong position

Fiji’s track record in containing COVID-19 continues to put the destination in a strong position to reassure international visitors that it will be a safe destination to visit when borders reopen. According to Tourism Fiji, the importance of developing a “destination-wide” program to communicate Fiji’s achievement in containing COVID-19, and showcase the safety measures in...

Post Fiji launches hamper pack initiative

Fijians living overseas can now order hamper packs from Post Fiji and have them delivered to any family affected by COVID-19. This, after Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa launched the Post Fiji hamper pack initiative in Suva today. Post Fiji CEO Anirudha Bansod said the pandemic had affected hundreds of families...

Fijians warned against pyramid schemes

The Consumer Council of Fiji has discovered that certain organised groups have been trying to lure Fijians into ‘get rich quick’ pyramid schemes by making enticing promises of high returns within a short period of time leaving consumers hundreds of dollars out of pocket. According to the CCF, Fijian consumers are being targeted by notorious...

Court: Man facing arson and attempted murder charges fit to stand trial

A  38-year-old man who is alleged to have set his house on fire in June this year at Nadera, Nasinu, has been further remanded by the High Court in Suva. The matter involving Pranil Alvin Singh was called today before judge Justice Daniel Goundar. Mr Singh is charged with one count of arson and two...

Eight Police officers appear in Tavua court on assault charges

Eight police officers appeared at the Tavua Magistrates Court this morning for the alleged assault of two men last year. Appearing before Resident Magistrate Lisiate Fotofili were Emosi Tagicakivanua, Vishwam Baran, Alivereti Sukamanu, Nemani Lutumailgai, Viliame Nagatalevu, Samuela Vuci, Jese Marovia and Dinesh Chand who face a total of 24 charges. Magistrate Fotofili granted bail to...

Repair works underway for damaged classrooms

Bhawani Dayal Arya College classrooms that were damaged during Tropical Cyclone Harold are being repaired. According to the Fijian Government, a classroom for about 40 students has been constructed. “This was made possible because of the Free Education Grant and support from some well-wishers,” it stated. “More damaged structure construction is currently underway, and we...

Lawyer requests for psychiatric evaluation for Congo national

The lawyer representing Congolese national Kiala Lusaka accused of murdering his wife in Suva last year has requested the High Court in Suva for a psychiatric evaluation to be conducted. Defence lawyer Laurel Vaurasi made the request to Justice Daniel Goundar when the matter was called this morning. Justice Goundar has further remanded the accused....

DPP sanctions charges against eight police officers; appear in court today

Eight police officers will be presented at the Tavua Magistrates Court today facing charges related to an alleged assault case in Tavua. This after Director of Public Prosecutions Christopher Pryde sanctioned charges against the eight officers. According to the DPP, the eight police officers are Emosi Tagicakivanua, Vishwam Baran, Alivereti Sukamanu, Nemani Lutumailgai, Viliame Nagatalevu,...

Global coronavirus cases rise to more than 12 million

(Reuters) – Global coronavirus cases exceeded 12 million on Wednesday, according to a Reuters tally, as evidence mounts of the airborne spread of the disease that has killed more than half a million people in seven months. The number of cases is triple that of severe influenza illnesses recorded annually, according to the World Health...

Date set for mass murder trial

All pre-trial issues pertaining to the trial proceedings of Mohammed Raheesh Isoof – the man charged with the alleged murder of a family of five in the Nausori Highlands a year ago – have been sorted. This was the information shared in the High Court in Lautoka yesterday when the matter was called for mention...

Musicians raise industry concerns

Protecting the iconic farewell song Isa Lei is one of the key focus areas of the Fiji Performing Rights Association (FPRA). This was highlighted in a submission to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence in June this year. Association director Eremasi Tamanisau said another concern was the rampant illegal downloading of music....

Girl gives up her dream for siblings

After her mother abandoned her family and her father was handed a 10-year jail term, Salanieta Volavola gave up on her dream of becoming a chef. She shared how she gave up school after Year 12 when she and her five siblings came under the care of a relative at Vunivi settlement, Bilo Rd outside...

Dr Fong: We must never lose sight

Fiji has never closed its borders from its own citizens during the COVID-19 pandemic, says Ministry of Health acting permanent secretary Dr James Fong. He said since April 23, all repatriated citizens had been tested for coronavirus. “Without causing a risk to a single person and like any other country that have been successfully containing...

Man in custody for alleged attack

A man was arrested yesterday for allegedly attacking his de facto partner and stepdaughter with a knife at Kabisi, Sigatoka. He allegedly struck the two yesterday morning resulting in injuries to the hands and body. This newspaper was reliably informed the stepdaughter was transferred to the Lautoka Hospital. Police had not responded to queries on...

‘Refocus on agriculture sector’

There should be a government guarantee scheme for farmers in the agricultural sector. This was a recommendation made by Sugar Cane Growers Fund chief executive officer Raj Sharma, who said agriculture including sugarcane farming were sectors that should have more funding in the next national budget. “At the moment the cost of borrowing is quite...

9000 students receive free lunch

About 9000 students at Sangam Fiji administered schools started receiving free lunch from yesterday. The organisation has 22 primary and secondary schools in Fiji. Because of the hardships brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the organisation has decided to provide lunch three times a week for the next six weeks to all students. About 1200...

9th July

Day ‘used to improve Fijians’ situations’

French Ambassador to Fiji Jean-Francois Fitou says Bastille Day this year will be used to improve the situation of Fijian families hit by COVID-19. He said the French Embassy would host a market day event this Saturday to assist vendors who were trying to make ends meet during difficult times. Bastille Day, held on July...

Churches seek to assist students

The Methodist and Catholic churches in Fiji are working to ascertain the number of students in their schools who have been affected by COVID-19. The Rev Dr Epineri Vakadewavosa, the president of the Methodist Church, said the school boards for all 31 schools have been asked to work with teachers in their respective schools to...

BACKTRACKS: Shankar’s passion for religious songs

Sadhu Gauri Shankar’s musical journey in the dry and dusty back roads of Mulomulo, Nadi, is a tale of passion and commitment. The 98-year-old was influenced by his father, a girmitya who was a mere 18 years old when he arrived in Fiji from India. Shankar said he grew up surrounded by music and began...

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