More than $31m in aid for the West

A number of crowd gathered during the HOMES-CARE assistance at Ba market grounds. Picture: FT FILE

A little more than $31 million has been distributed to people living in the Western Division under the Government’s HOMES-CARE assistance program. This was confirmed by Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa.

She said the funds were disbursed to 26,628 people from Sigatoka, Nadi, Lautoka, Ba, Tavua and Ra. She added that similar assistance totalling up to $661,500 in assistance was issued in Labasa.

Yesterday in Ba, Mrs Vuniwaqa said they expected another large number of people to apply for the assistance.

“This was one of the worst affected areas and we are expecting a large number of people to apply,” she said.

“So far, it’s going well and we have a big crowd in Ba. We are targeting a similar number as we had in Lautoka but we are anticipating the number to increase.”

By 8am more than 3500 people had been given numbers and were waiting to be served. Meanwhile, in Lautoka, successful applicants were at Shirley Park to receive their M-PAiSA cards.

Mrs Vuniwaqa said this was because the Vodafone network had issues last Saturday, affecting the distribution of the cards.

According to the ministry, a total of 7103 people were served in Lautoka with $7,734,000 handed out to successful applicants.

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