100 villagers benefit from new bus service in their area

No more walking for 3 hours to access bus service for Qaranivai villagers and people in the Udu district after bus service reached the Qaranivai yesterday. Picture: SUPPLIED

QARANIVAI villagers in Dogotuki, Macuata had a reason to celebrate as bus services reached the area yesterday. The 100 individuals in the village, including villagers in the Udu Peninsula, no longer have to walk for three hours to Nukusere or go for boat rides to Nayaroyaro to access the bus service in Labasa.

Former Qaranivai Village headman Jone Daliga said in the past villagers had to walk or ride on boats to access the bus service.

Mr Daliga said since the bus service was only accessible on Tuesdays and Wednesdays to villages, transportation on other weekdays was only possible through carrier hires.

“A carrier hire from Nukusere to Labasa costs $150 which is really too much for people depending on meagre livelihoods like fishing and root crop farming,” he said.

“Now we have access to bus service daily for $8.15 one-way with one return trip daily. “This is a big break for villagers who have been suffering for a long while trying to get to and from Labasa.”

Another villager, Apolosi Tuiloma, said farmers like him could now transport their produce to the Labasa market easily in a timely manner.

Mr Tuiloma said before farmers found it hard to transport crops to the market without damaging them because of the transportation difficulties they faced.

Another villager, Eparama Tevita, commended the move by the Fiji Roads Authority to rehabilitate the road, adding it was a big boost for villagers in the Dogotuki and Udu districts.