Long wait for road

Men of Matokana village on horseback returning to their village in the hghlands of Navosa. FRA has stated that road upgrade will begin at the end of this month. Picture: SIKELI QOUNADOVU

VILLAGERS in Matokana say once a tractor reaches the village, then they will believe the road will be upgraded. Located deep in the highlands of Navosa, it takes more than seven hours of trekking from Baravilevu (the nearest dirt road) through the rugged terrain and crossing the Sigatoka river to get to Matokana.

There are other access points to the village, but this is the main access point for the villagers when transporting their produce to the market and delivering housing supplies back to the village.

The village can also be accessed from Waibasaga Village or the old road from Nawairabe Village.

More than two decades ago, a logging truck delivering timber to the sawmill serviced the villagers, however, when operations ceased in the late ’90s, the road was not maintained and villagers had no option but to take the treacherous trek for six to seven hours to get to the nearest dirt road.