Family refuses to move

A LAUTOKA family living in a flood-prone area refused to move to an evacuation centre because of their invalid father and grandfather.

Setuate Temo said his family could not go to the evacuation centre because they wanted to be with 79-year-old Jope Sova.

Police had begun moving residents of Taiperia settlement at Natabua Seaside at midday yesterday to Natabua Primary School in anticipation of deteriorating weather.

“I told the police we are not moving because my dad is completely bedridden and the toilet facilities at Natabua Primary School are up a flight of stairs,” Mr Sova said

“This would make things very difficult for us.

“It’s easier for us to look after him at home.”

When quizzed about what would happen should floodwaters rise, Mr Temo said they would take their chances.

“I cannot leave my father and because I’m staying, the others in my family also want to stay.

“So unless there is an alternative arrangement for dad, we will ride out TD13F here in our home.”

Mr Temo lives with 12 others including three small children under five years of age.

Yesterday, police chief operations officer, Acting Assistant Commissioner of Police Maretino Qiolevu called on residents in flood-affected areas to co-operate with his officers.

He said people should move to higher ground during daylight hours instead of placing police in a difficult situation by calling for assistance at night.

Mr Temo said he understood the call by police and would not have hesitated if evacuation facilities were equipped to care for invalids.

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