TWENTY-TWO months after abandoning their village, Tukuraki villagers in the Ba highlands are hopeful that this year will be the opportune time to rebuild their lives and live together again in a village setting.
The villagers have been living in makeshift shelters and scattered all over the region since the tragic landslide that killed four people during heavy rainfall in early 2012.
Village headman Waisake Vuiduvu said they wanted to reunite in a village whether it be the same place or a new site altogether.
"For 22 months we have been apart from each other and our village is being deserted," he said.
"We have met on numerous occasions and the main issue discussed was for the villagers to unite.
"In fact, we are planning to fulfil our target of uniting in a new home in 2015.
"We are working hard with various stakeholders to rebuild our lives."
Mr Vuiduvu said as villagers across the country enjoyed their new year celebrations in their villages, the Tukuraki villagers celebrated in other villages in Ba.
"This year we celebrated the new year in Nalotawa Village but we are hoping that come 2015 we will celebrate the new year at our new village site," he said.
Mr Vuiduvu said the celebration at Nalotawa was also a good opportunity to discuss the re-establishment of their village.