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Nurses attending to patients at the Makoi Health Centre. Picture: FT FILE

Nurses specialisation continues to grow in Fiji – Health Minister

THE area of nurse specialisation continues to grow in Fiji, says Health Minister Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete. “We are now beginning to look at maybe taking nurse practitioners into areas where there is a zone nurse,” Dr...

Big tech – too big to fail, says data whistleblower Wylie

CHIPPING NORTON, England (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Big Tech is becoming “too big to fail” and should not saddle ill-equipped consumers with safekeeping privacy for society at large, data whistleblower Christopher Wylie said on Thursday. From banking to dating, tech companies such as Facebook, Google and Amazon are so integral to modern life that users...

Activist calls for veterans ministry

BUKA, 22 NOVEMBER 2019 (POST COURIER) – Former PNGDF soldier and human right activist Justine Kungkei is calling on the national government to create a veterans affairs ministry. The main purpose for this call is to cater for and compensate all soldiers in their involvement in the Bougainville Crisis from 1989 to 1999. As a...

PM Bainimarama: Cpt Brown’s leadership values guided his decisions

SOME of the decisions and actions taken by the Government was inherited from the leadership values of first-ever Commander of the Fijian Navy Captain Stanley Brown. Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama shared this in Parliament today saying the late Captain Brown was his mentor. “To this day, those same lessons of leadership guide every decision...

Bosnians outraged by alleged abuse of children with special needs

SARAJEVO (Reuters) – Sarajevo’s prosecutor has launched an investigation into the alleged abuse of children with special needs at a state-run care home in Bosnia, after a lawmaker made public photographs and a video showing children tied to beds and radiators. A protest in the Bosnian capital demanding the regional government take action drew several...

‘Our blood shed’: At Panguna, devastation lingers

BUKA, 22 NOVEMBER 2019 (RNZ PACIFIC) – As Bougainville nears its self-determination referendum, the mine that sparked its bloody civil war is seen as the key to potential independence from Papua New Guinea. Panguna copper mine was the major revenue earner for the PNG state in its early decades of independence. But it’s been mothballed...

Health ministry already committed $1.5m of budget allocation

THE Ministry of Health and Medical Services has already committed $1.5million of its 2019/2020 Budget. Minister of Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete highlighted this in Parliament yesterday. He said there was a budget appropriation that was available for overseas evacuation. “The overseas referrals were for treatment only and not for diagnostic workup, second...

Russian parliament backs law to label individuals foreign agents

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia’s lower house of parliament passed legislation on Thursday that will allow individual journalists to be labelled foreign agents, a move that critics say will tighten curbs on the media. Russia adopted an initial foreign agent law in 2012 which gave the authorities the power to label non-governmental organisations and human rights...

Dr Waqainabete: Measles started from infected regional country

WE had no measles in Fiji, says Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete. And he told Parliament that the re-emergence of measles in the country started from one of the countries that was infected in the region. “There are countries in the region such as New Zealand, Tonga and Samoa, and the...

Two toddlers among 73 migrants plucked from drifting dinghy off Libya

ONBOARD OPEN ARMS, off Libya (Reuters) – Some 73 migrants, many suffering from hypothermia and burns, were rescued by a Spanish charity ship late on Wednesday from a packed rubber dinghy that had been drifting off the Libyan coast for nearly 24 hours. It is the latest rescue by the Open Arms vessel in the...

Measles alert issued for Melbourne Airport and Southern Cross Station

MELBOURNE, 22 NOVEMBER 2019 (7 NEWS) – A measles alert has been issued for a series of highly congested Melbourne locations after an infectious man travelled from Samoa, where they are battling a deadly outbreak. It’s understood the man in his 20s was infectious when he travelled on an Air New Zealand flight from to...

2019 Corrections Service Amendment Bill enacted

THE Corrections Service Amendment Bill 2019 was enacted in Parliament this morning. Under this new law, prisoners for whom non-parole periods have been fixed by the court will now serve the entire term of the non-parole period. Additionally, the calculation for the date of release of a prisoner must not take into account the non-parole...

In Thailand, Pope condemns exploitation of women, children for sex

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Pope Francis condemned on Thursday the exploitation of women and children for prostitution in Thailand, which is notorious for its sex tourism, saying the violence, abuse and enslavement they suffer are evils that must be uprooted. Francis, on the first full day of his visit to mainly Buddhist Thailand, led a Mass...

Unvaccinated or unsure pregnant women to stop work, Samoa Police warn anti-vaxxers

APIA,22 NOVEMBER 2019 (SAMOA OBSERVER) – The Samoa Government has issued new state of emergency orders with fresh restrictions on movement in a bid to contain the spread of measles. There are more than 1100 cases of measles in the country and at least 16 children and one adult have died either from measles or...

Forum to provide avenue for land and property professionals

MINISTRY of iTaukei Affairs permanent secretary Meleti Bainimarama opened the Institute of Valuation and Estate Management of Fiji’s 10th Annual Conference in Nadi this morning. “With the theme ‘Evolving Property Dynamics for the Future’ – Land Governance Framework, Innovation and Technology, Intangible Rights and Real Estate Economy, this forum will provide an avenue for land...

Tuvalu rejects China offer to build islands and retains ties with Taiwan

TAIPEI, 22 NOVEMBER 2019 (REUTERS) – Tuvalu’s foreign minister said on Thursday the South Pacific nation had rejected offers from Chinese companies to build artificial islands to help it cope with rising sea levels, an approach viewed as undermining Taiwan’s influence in the region. Tuvalu foreign minister Simon Kofe instead explicitly expressed support for Taiwan...

Greenpeace activists abseil down Hellenic Petroleum storage tank to protest ‘climate emergency’

ATHENS (Reuters) – Greenpeace activists abseiled down the side of huge storage tank at a Hellenic Petroleum refinery near Athens on Thursday and unfurled a huge banner protesting at the company’s oil and gas exploration projects across Greece. Greece’s biggest oil refiner Hellenic Petroleum (HELPE) operates three refineries and has been licensed to search for...

Australians shelter from bushfires as political heat climbs

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Firefighters battled hundreds of bushfires across Australia on Thursday as scores of blazes sprang up in new locations, triggering warnings that it was too late for some residents to evacuate. As Thick smoke blanketed the most populous city of Sydney for a third day, residents were urged to keep children indoors, stepping...

‘Projected debt for 2020 is $6b’

FIJI’S total debt in July 2020 is projected to be about $6.18 billion, says National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad. He said this could happen if Government fulfilled its borrowing obligations of $1.019b under the 2019-2020 budget and met projected loan repayments of more than $617 million. Speaking in Parliament this week, he said...

Restructuring of police force

POLICE constables were sitting on an annual salary of $9000 in 2006, Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum told Parliament yesterday. He said just recently this year their salaries had increased to between $16,000 and $18,000 per annum. Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said Government had invested millions of dollars in restructuring the Fiji Police Force. He said police officers who...

Biman: FijiFirst’s policies more about politics not economics

IT is the worst kept secret in Fiji that the Government has run out of money. This was the message from National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad to Parliament this week. “I am genuinely worried for Fiji’s short-term economic future,” he said. “The FijiFirst party has no plan to resolve it. “For years their...

MP sheds light on hardships faced by Fijians

NATIONAL Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad says the situation in Fiji is grim. Speaking in Parliament this week, he claimed the cost of living was rising to the point of being unaffordable. He said the health sector was facing issues with patients in Serua and Namosi not able to have basic ultra-sound scans at...

A-G attacks Opposition

ATTORNEY-GENERAL Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has labelled Opposition MPs as a bunch of people who deliberately hide facts. Speaking in Parliament yesterday, he said the level of hypocrisy from the MPs was a concern. “They don’t know how to remodel themselves to be an effective Opposition and they are not used to being in the Opposition.” He...

‘Government has betrayed youths’

THE FijiFirst Government has betrayed the youths of this country by failing to live up to its promises, says Opposition spokesman for youth and sports Ratu Suliano Matanitobua. He made the comments while speaking in response to President Jioji Konrote’s Parliament opening speech. Ratu Suliano said Government duped youths by promising them one laptop per...

Reduction in grant a broken promise, says Ratu Suliano

THE reduction in education grants to schools is another example of the FijiFirst Government’s failure to deliver on its promises to the youth. This was highlighted by Opposition spokesman for youth and sports Ratu Suliano Matanitobua in his response to President Jioji Konrote’s Parliament opening speech. Ratu Suliano said there was a danger youths and...

Russia opens investigation into space centre fraud after Putin rebuke

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian investigators said on Thursday they had opened two criminal cases into the management of a company involved in building the Vostochny Cosmodrome, a space centre in the country’s Far East. The announcement came less than two weeks after President Vladimir Putin complained to government officials about corruption at the facility and...

150th anniversary: Evidence of early Fiji

IT was a tiny piece of charcoal that confirmed Fiji was inhabited in 1290 BC — 800 years earlier than previously thought. In April 1967, The Fiji Times interviewed the then relieving director of the Fiji Museum, Elizabeth Shaw, who found the piece of charcoal that year. According to records, the earliest date previously recorded...

Measles scare closes school

THE Fiji School for the Blind was yesterday forced to cancel its annual prize-giving event after a student developed measles-like symptoms. School headteacher Sharmila Chandra confirmed the student had visible red rashes all over his body. The school was yesterday quarantined and all students were vaccinated. “We have received a directive from the medical department...

New outlets open at mall

TWO new outlets opened for business at MHCC yesterday which was dedicated to sportswear and electronics. Courts opened the Lifestyle SportsWorld and Cyber City outlets to the public to engage them with a smarter yet healthier living according to the chief marketing officer Anil Senewiratne. “This will be the first branded Lifestyle store we have...

Inspired by colours

NAVUA is a town of mixed intricacies. Nestled on the banks of the Navua River, the rural town is marked by its thriving produce market. Villagers from upriver and outer islands such as Beqa travel down to the town to sell their produce. It’s the starting point of a lot of inland river tours as...

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