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Fiji Time: 2:28 AM on Thursday 17 April

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Let there be light

Nanise Loanakadavu
Monday, December 17, 2012

THE people of Matasawalevu and Nakasaleka in Kadavu breathed a new sigh of relief after the commissioning of the Fiji 1000 Solar Home Systems Projects on Thursday last week.

About 34 families marked a milestone achievement thanks to the Japan government on their move to address environmental issues including climate change in Fiji.

The project was a result of the outcome of the 5th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM 5) on May 2009 at Hokkaido, Japan.

Villager Jeke Tomu, 60, said it was every villager's wish to have electricity but because of the logistics and the high cost of living, it was difficult to provide these needs to the people.

Speaking in the iTaukei language, Mr Tomu bowed his head and said this was a dream come true and the people of Matasawalevu were fortunate to be identified by the Department of Energy for this timely assistance.

He was the only villager who had a generator on the island four years ago but since then they had been heavily relying on kerosene lamps.

He said sometimes families slept in the dark because they could not afford the cost of kerosene — let alone hiring a fibre glass boat for $80 to buy kerosene from the nearest village.