News

Renzi or bust? Italian parties’ options narrow in government crisis

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s ruling parties are reluctantly coming to terms with the prospect of having to forge a new deal with the centrist Italia Viva party which quit the government and forced this week’s...

Uprising 7s deferred

Due to unfavorable weather condition that is likely to hit Fiji in the coming days, the 2021 Mobil Uprising 7s has been deferred to next week. Tournament organiser Ropate Kauvesi said after talks with the Fiji Meteorological Services and the NDMO the decision has been made to postpone the tournament in light of player safety....

Search on for two missing fishermen

The search is underway for two fishermen who left Cikobia Village for Vunikodi in a fiberglass boat yesterday. Police are conducting the search for the two on a fishing boat with the assistance of the Fiji Navy Search and Rescue Centre. “The report was lodged by the Mata ni Tikina Udu at the Labasa Police...

English lockdown set to last until at least March, Johnson indicates

LONDON (Reuters) – Prime Minister Boris Johnson indicated on Wednesday the COVID-19 lockdown in England would last until March 8 when schools could start to reopen as the government announced new measures to clamp down on travel to and from Britain. A highly contagious new variant of the virus, which emerged in southeast England at...

Weather watch: Flood warning now in force

A flood warning is now in force for low lying areas and small streams within the Qawa River. According to the Fiji Met Service, areas that will be affected are Dreketilailai, Boubale and Urata crossings. A flash flooding warning remains in force for low lying areas and small streams adjacent to Qawa River, Vunivau stretch...

Wall Street vs Main Street fight quashes hedge funds as GameStop keeps rallying

(Reuters) – Retail traders scored against professionals on Wednesday as hedge funds Citron and Melvin retreated with heavy losses on short positions in GameStop in the week-long battle between Wall Street and Main Street, with more calling for scrutiny of anonymous stock trading posts on social media. Funds sold long positions in stocks to pay...

U.S. says $35 billion more in pandemic loans approved, trying to fix program snags

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) on Tuesday said it had approved 400,000 more pandemic relief loans worth $35 billion and was trying to fix issues operational snags with the program raised by lenders. The SBA launched the third round of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) this month, but significant changes to...

AmEx sees consumer travel recovery after lower spending hits profit

(Reuters) – American Express Co said on Tuesday it expects an uptick in holiday travel this summer, but not business travel, as it seeks to recover from a year which dented airline traffic and hotel bookings, knocking 15% off its bottom line. The New York-based company still beat Wall Street estimates for profit as it...

Tesla’s report could trigger $7 billion payout to Musk

(Reuters) – Tesla’s quarterly report on Wednesday could trigger a $7 billion options payout to Chief Executive Elon Musk, while owners of the electric car maker’s soaring stock are keen to hear the company’s target for 2021 deliveries. Tesla posts its December quarter results following a nearly 700% surge in its stock over the past...

AT&T is sued for $1.35 billion over technology to synchronize smart devices

NEW YORK (Reuters) – AT&T Inc was sued on Tuesday for at least $1.35 billion by a Seattle company that accused the telecommunications giant of stealing its patented “twinning” technology, which lets smart devices such as watches and tablets respond to calls placed to a single phone number. Network Apps LLC said AT&T abandoned joint...

27th January

State to file summary of facts

State lawyers at the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) have been given until next Monday to file finalised details of allegations against 18 people facing sedition charges. The group appeared before Justice Chamath Morais in Lautoka, where they pleaded guilty to one count of sedition. The Rabulu villagers from Tavua were Timoci...

Judge: Tariffs unresolved

Sentencing tariffs for people charged with the cultivation of illicit drugs among trial judges is unresolved by the Court of Appeal or the Supreme Court, said Court of Appeal judge Justice Chandana Prematilaka. He made the comments when he delivered a ruling on January 8 against a man who had appealed against his sentence. Waisake...

Goundar: Sentence ‘fits your crime’

A man who robbed and raped a woman was told that his criminal sentence was appropriate for the crime he committed. High Court judge Justice Daniel Goundar sentenced the 39-year-old man to 20 years imprisonment. “Your sentence fits your crime,” he said. The incident took place in 2019 at Vuci Rd in Nausori. He was...

Rapist father sentenced to 15 years

A father who forced his 11-year-old daughter to watch a porn movie with him and later raped her has been sentenced to 15 years and four months imprisonment. In delivering his sentence, High Court in Lautoka judge Justice Sunil Sharma said there had been an increase in sexual offences involving offenders who were known to...

Lawyer given 7 days to file papers

THE lawyer representing suspended under-19 Naitasiri rugby player Keresi Maya has been given seven days to file and serve statements to the Civil High Court in Suva. The matter between the suspended player and the Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) was called before judge Justice Deepthi Amaratunga yesterday. In the civil action, Maya claimed proper processes...

Wealth of the sea

On January 11, 1980, The Fiji Times published a report on how fishing had developed and helped Viwa islanders in the Yasawa Group. The report stated earnings from fishing had helped establish a housing scheme for Viwa islanders. The people on the island had been operating a fishing scheme for the past decade (1970-1980) and...

Students cross flooded river

School students living at Naqeledina Settlement in Qwali, Sigatoka were forced to cross a flooded river on Monday afternoon. The students were assisted across the flooded waters by their parents who held on to ropes used to guide them across the river. Former Yavulo Village headman Jone Ratubuli said about 20 students had to be...

Probe into Lautoka court incident

Police investigation into the incident where a man jumped off the two-storey building of the Lautoka Magistrates Court has begun. Divisional police commander West, Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP)Surend Sami has confirmed the inquiry. “The accused has been discharged and we are conducting a full investigation into the incident,” he said. “Right now I cannot...

NFU: Farmers need financial assistance

The National Farmers Union (NFU) has called on Government to announce assistance for sugarcane farmers affected by STC Yasa in the North. This was one of the major topics discussed during union’s executive board meeting in Lautoka yesterday. NFU general secretary Mahendra Chaudhry said farmers needed financial assistance now. “Farmers have the crop to look...

Goldman Sachs CEO Solomon pays price of 1MDB scandal

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Goldman Sachs Chief Executive David Solomon’s annual pay fell by $10 million, or 36%, in 2020, according to regulatory disclosures filed Tuesday, reflecting the bank’s role in Malaysia’s 1MDB scandal. Solomon will receive $17.5 million for his work during the year, compared with $27.5 million the year before, the bank said....

$4 million project to finish next year

Construction of the $4 million Barefoot College has started in Macuata, Vanua Levu. Minister for Women Mereseini Vuniwaqa said the project, based at Wainikoro outside Labasa Town, is expected to end next year. “They have started building the project and the whole project ends in the next financial year, which is next year,” she said....

Students help deliver stationery

Students were part of a team that travelled from the Gold Town of Tavua to Vanua Levu to distribute school stationery to children living in Sever Tropical Cyclone Yasa-affected areas. The group visited affected families twice with the first round including cartons of food rations and cash, while the second was targeted at students. The...

Man dies in power pole mishap

A power line contractor fell to his death after his safety harness equipment allegedly failed to support him while working on an EFL power pole as part of the STC Yasa rehabilitation program. Energy Fiji Ltd (EFL) confirmed that on January 9, the contractor, who was working on a pole at Malau, Labasa, fell from...

Canefarmers work on a sugarcane field in the West. NFP leader Professor Biman Prasad claims the sugar industry is struggling for survival. Picture: SUPPLIED

Canefarmers worry about their yields

Canefarmers are worried about the yield of their crops after the prolonged wet weather and the impact of STC Yasa. National Farmers Union president Surendra Lal said they expected more than 50 per cent of cane fields on Vanua Levu to be affected as a result of prolonged wet weather. “STC Yasa hit the cane...

Namosimalua accepts contract non-renewal

Former acting secretary-general to Parliament Viniana Namosimalua has accepted the non-renewal of her employment contract. Ms Namosimalua said she was content with her performance and the contributions she had made in Parliament over the past six years. “Everyone has a season and this is the end of my season,” Ms Namosimalua said. She said no...

TD04F may develop into a cyclone, say forecasters

The tropical disturbance (TD04F) located to the north of New Caledonia could merge with a low pressure system near Vanuatu. This, according to the Fiji Meteorological Service, could possibly result in a tropical cyclone that has been forecasted to move east between Fiji and Vanuatu later this week. “A trough of low pressure remains slow...

Asian shares set for mixed opening, eyes on Fed, stimulus

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Asian equities looked set to rise on Wednesday, bouncing back from a steep sell-off on Tuesday, while Australian stocks were seen opening weaker in a catchup after a Tuesday holiday. Higher markets in Europe and a slight decline from record stock levels in the United States overnight suggested that investors were...

Police urge public to be vigilant

The Fiji Police Force is calling on the public to assist in preventing further loss of life by avoiding swimming in flooded waters. Police spokeswoman Savaira Tabua says the force is reminding the public about the dangers lurking beneath the waters, especially in flooded areas and people must be aware of this. “Accidents can occur...

Storm threat lingers

The Western Division is at a greater risk of being hit by tropical cyclones during the current La Niña event, states the Fiji Meteorological Service. This is stated in their El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) outlook released on Monday. ENSO is an irregular cycle of persistent warming and cooling of sea-surface temperature in the tropical Pacific...

Gavoka: Rescind changes to Toppers

Social Democratic Liberal Party leader Viliame Gavoka has called on the Government to rescind changes made to the National Toppers Scheme (NTS). Mr Gavoka said there was a lot more behind the decision by Tertiary Scholarship and Loans Board (TLSB) than meets the eye. “For a start, where are the students’ rights to equality under...

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