EMPLOYMENT opportunities and the cost of living have been among the most pressing issues highlighted by rural dwellers at campaign meetings organised by the National Federation Party.
Speaking in Navo, Nadi, party executive Faizal Koya said the campaign trail in the Western Division, which has covered a considerable amount of rural communities, continued to bring to light the basic struggles faced by many.
"Like our leader said, we have graduates in the West and rural areas who even with good degrees are unable to find employment," Mr Koya said.
"One thing we noticed about the rural areas is that they are going to the basics, finding difficulty getting basics like groceries because they cannot afford to."
He said education, particularly access to higher education, was another issue of concern highlighted by rural people, with many bound by financial limitations.
"If you note, statistically, in the last 10, 15 to 20 years, the rural schools have really produced students who are able to elevate themselves and get a better education.
"The only unfortunate thing is the bridge that is missing is the finance side of it. With Professor Prasad as a leader, we find it very comforting to have a leader who is able to foresee and draw up a plan for the next five to 10 years for the youths."