News

18th January

Better communication needed for outreach up north: Maharaj

THE low turnout of oral submissions at the public consultation on the Code of Conduct Bill 33 held in the North this week means a better communication outreach is needed for the public. Standing Committee...

Plastics, consumer goods makers in $1.5 billion pledge to rein in waste

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Global companies including BASF, DowDuPont, Procter & Gamble and SABIC have formed an alliance to fight plastic waste, pledging to spend $1.5 billion over the next five years. The Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), unveiled by its 28 founding companies on Wednesday, convened amid reports of a worsening environmental crisis from...

U.N. Security Council approves up to 75 Yemen truce monitors

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – The United Nations Security Council unanimously approved on Wednesday the deployment of up to 75 observers to Yemen’s port city of Hodeidah for six months to monitor a ceasefire and redeployment of forces by the warring parties. After a week of U.N.-sponsored peace talks in Sweden last month, the Iranian-aligned Houthi...

Migrating students under TELS need to clear debt: Das

MIGRATING students who were under the Tertiary Education Loans Scheme (TELS) need to clear their debt with Government to allow other students to benefit from the scheme, says Fiji Revenue and Customs Service (FRCS) chief executive officer Visvanath Das. A total of $302 million in loans were disbursed to 54,805 students by Government under the...

Cane growers will leave industry if it remains unprofitable: Consultation

CANE growers will not remain in the industry or increase production if it remained unprofitable because of the high production costs and labour issues. This was the message from prominent Yaladro canegrower Rajendra Raghlu during a consultation on the National Sugar Industry Policy in Tavua on Wednesday. Mr Raghlu said while there had been a lot of progress made to...

Value of global CO2 markets hit record 144 billion euros in 2018: report

LONDON (Reuters) – The value of traded global markets for carbon dioxide (CO2) allowances soared 250 percent last year to a record high of 144 billion euros ($164 billion), analysts at Refinitiv said on Wednesday. The overall figure was pushed higher by the soaring cost of carbon permits in Europe’s Emissions Trading System, (ETS) which...

Venezuela children left behind as parents flee to find work abroad

CARACAS (Reuters) – Yusneiker and Anthonella have been living with their grandmother since their father left Venezuela and its collapsing economy last year for Peru, to try and earn enough to feed them. Two years earlier, their mother fled for the Dominican Republic for the same reason. Yusneiker, 12, and Anthonella, 8, are eating better...

SODELPA presents petition for special parliamentary session for Aussie PM

THE Social Democratic Liberal Party presented a petition to the President, Jioji Konrote, yesterday to convene a special parliamentary session to give the Australian Prime Minister the opportunity to address Fijians. Opposition Leader Sitiveni Rabuka said the petition invoked Standing Order 21 (3) of the Parliament of the Republic of Fiji. “The President must summon...

Government should change laws weakening indigenous rights: Submission

THE Government should change laws weakening indigenous rights before enacting the Code of Conduct Bill, Parliamentarians were told yesterday. Savusavu resident and retired civil servant Laisiasa Wainikesa told the Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights during a public consultation held in Savusavu yesterday that the Bill must be specific about human rights. “What...

Disgraced U.S. ex-cardinal could be defrocked soon – Vatican sources

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Disgraced former U.S. cardinal Theodore McCarrick is almost certain to be defrocked in the next few weeks over allegations against him, including sexual abuse of minors, two Vatican sources said. Last July, McCarrick became the first Catholic prelate in nearly 100 years to lose the title of cardinal. The allegations against...

Koro man in court for unlawful cultivation of illicit drugs

A 21-YEAR-old man charged with one count of unlawful cultivation of illicit drugs appeared at the Suva Magistrates Court. It is alleged that Eroni Bale without lawful authority cultivated 21 plants of marijuana that had weighed 2.210 kilograms. The alleged incident occurred on January 7, 2019, on Koro Island in Lomaiviti. Police prosecutor Sergeant Luke...

Polish police detain suspects for hate speech after Gdansk mayor death

WARSAW (Reuters) – Polish police have detained at least 10 people since Tuesday over calls on social media for murder and acts of aggression made in the wake of the killing on a public stage of Gdansk’s mayor. Mayor Pawel Adamowicz, a critic of anti-immigrant policies, was stabbed on Sunday evening by a man who...

As teachers get paid, learning returns to bombed-out Yemen school

TAIZ, Yemen (Reuters) – Its books have been looted and walls blown out, but a school in war-torn southern Yemen is hopeful that the resumption of regular salary payments can keep teachers and children in classrooms. “In the past few months things have stabilised, teachers’ salaries have begun to be paid, and hopefully things will...

17th January

Fiji Museum staff hosts Jenny Morrison

FIJI Museum director Sipiriano Nemani says they are privileged to have hosted Jennifer Morrison, the wife of Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, in Suva today. Mr Nemani said in terms of Australia assisting the museum, the museum had had a long time relationship with Australian institutions. “Such as the Victorian Museum in Melbourne and AusAid in...

Russia calls on Japan to recognise outcome of World War Two

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov denied on Wednesday that Moscow was imposing an ultimatum on Japan in talks to end a decades-long territorial dispute, but called on Tokyo to recognise the results of World War Two. Japan is seeking a peace deal with Russia it hopes will end a dispute over islands...

Australian authorities warn about heat as temperature soars

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australians have been warned to avoid exerting themselves outdoors and to drink lots of water as record temperatures in parts of the country look set to linger, and even increase, over coming days. Parts of New South Wales, Australia’s most populated state, and an area of Western Australia, saw record high minimum...

Three men in custody for alleged possession of illicit drugs

TWO men are in Police custody after they were allegedly found in possession of illicit drugs in Sigatoka yesterday. Police have confirmed that a 19-year-old man of Nasama was allegedly found in possession of four sachets of dried leaves believed to be marijuana. Police also said that a 17-year-old of Kulukulu was also in custody...

California storms to dump up to seven feet of snow, force evacuations

(Reuters) – A big Pacific storm is set to dump up to seven feet of snow in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains and several inches of rain elsewhere in the state on Wednesday and Thursday, compounding the flood risk after earlier rain storms blew through the state. “The big one is rolling in late morning today,...

Police charge pastor with four counts of rape

A PASTOR who has been charged with four counts of rape of a student in a village outside of Labasa will be appearing at the Labasa Magistrates Court tomorrow. The pastor who is in Police custody is alleged to have raped a 16-year-old student on four different occasions. The alleged incident occurred between November 2018 and...

Indian opposition seeks scrapping of 1870 sedition law after students charged

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India opposition politicians and media called for a colonial-era sedition law to be scrapped on Wednesday, accusing authorities of trying to suppress dissent after it was invoked against students marking the execution of a Kashmiri militant. Police used the 1870 law against 10 people, including a student organiser, for the 2016...

Voni chases dream to be a teacher

WITH the territory school term set to begin soon, students have been lining up at MHCC in Suva to enroll at the Fiji National University (FNU) booth to take up their studies. Among them was Ilikini Voni who enrolled in the Bachelor of Education (Secondary) program. Originally from Nakalou Village in Macuata, Vanua Levu, Mr...

Russia says it caught former U.S. marine accused of spying red-handed

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia said on Wednesday that it had caught former U.S. marine Paul Whelan, who is being held in Russia on spying charges, while he was in the act of carrying out illegal activities in his Moscow hotel room. Whelan, a former U.S. marine who also holds British, Canadian and Irish passports, was...

CJ Gates encourages lawyers to keep investing in knowledge

“STRENGTH, steadiness and ultimate success grow from going through and overcoming difficulties.” These were the words of Chief Justice Anthony Gates during the swearing-in ceremony of 22 new legal practitioners from the University of Fiji and Fiji National University in the High Court in Suva this morning. Justice Gates encouraged the new lawyers to keep investing...

Russia rules to hold jailed Ukrainian sailors until April 24 – agencies

MOSCOW (Reuters) – A court in Moscow ruled on Wednesday that four Ukrainian sailors seized by Russia last year off the coast of Crimea should be kept in pre-trial detention until April 24, Russian news agencies reported. Russia seized three Ukrainian navy vessels and their combined crew of 24 on Nov. 25 near Russian-annexed Crimea....

Fiji Coral Coast 7s: Kings 7s Select wins Youth plate title

KINGS 7s Select is the winner of the 2019 McDonald’s Fiji’s Coral Coast 7s Youth plate final after beating Wesley Fijians from New Zealand 17-12. The final on heavy rain was leveled 12-all towards the end but the US-based side grabbed the trophy when Waisale Serevi Jr beat two defenders to score the winning try....

Chief Magistrate to decide on bail application of man charged with sexual assault

A MAN charged with one count of sexual assault was this afternoon remanded by the Suva Magistrates Court. It is alleged the 60-year-old man unlawfully and indecently assaulted his five-year-old granddaughter on December 29, 2018, in a maritime island. Police prosecutor Constable Priti Prasad served full phase of disclosures and objected to bail on the...

Airline cabin crew member arrested in Australian drug bust

SYDNEY (Reuters) – An employee of a Malaysian airline was among eight people arrested in Australia on charges of trafficking more than 14 kg (30 lb) of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamines, Australian authorities said on Wednesday. The suspect worked for Malindo Air, a subsidiary of Indonesia’s Lion Air, which said the crew member had been...

Bainimarama and Morrison declare bilateral talks “fruitful”

FIJIAN Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Australian counterpart Scott Morrison had a fruitful bilateral meeting in Suva today, according to the two leaders. After the meeting, Mr Bainimarama said he was happy to announce the “Vuvale” partnership. “Vuvale” means family and Mr Bainimarama said he was confident that the partnership would help Fiji and the...

Fiji Coral Coast 7s: Rain fails to stop rugby festival

HEAVY rain failed to stop proceedings of the 2019 McDonald’s Fiji Coral Coast 7s at Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka this afternoon. With the finals of the youth competition looming, the final pool match in the women’s competition is underway between Lautoka Crusaders and Outrigger Knights. Lautoka Crusaders is leading 12-0.  

Traffic change in Nadi’s central business district

CHANGES have been made to the route in Nadi’s central business district after a safety audit at Koroivulo Avenue, Vunavau Street, and Queens Road intersection. And the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) is advising members of the travelling public that the flow of traffic out of Koroivulo Avenue and Vunavau Street into Queens Road is now...

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