From the Editor-in-Chief’s desk: Your January 22 briefing

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Bula

Here are some headlines that made The Fiji Times for Saturday, January 22.

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HEADLINES

PAGE 1

‘Nurses resigning’

THE Fiji Nursing Association claims nurses are resigning due to stress, fatigue, and lack of compensation. President Doctor Alisi Vudiniabola claimed that at one hospital, the nurse manager was working alone and looking after 28 patients because “most of the nurses were sick and tired”.

PAGE 2

Face-to-face classes

FACE to face classes for Year 8 to Year 13 will resume on Monday.

‘Abuse’ of free education

OVER 30 schools have been found to have abused free education grants, Education Minister Premila Kumar said at Nakauvadra High School in Rakiraki yesterday.

Team deployed

Teams of Government officials have been dispatched to the Lau group in response to the impact of the volcanic eruption in Tonga.

PAGE 3

Vacancies

A HOSPITAL in the Western Division has 24 vacancies and four others are waiting to leave as soon as staffing level improves.

Nurses work longer

Fiji Nursing Association president Dr Alisi Vudiniabola. Picture: SUPPLIED

SOME nurses have opted to work 12 hour shifts because there are not enough nurses to go around the eight-hour shift roster, claims Fiji Nursing Association president Doctor Alisi Vudiniabola.

PAGE 4

‘Teachers unaware’

SOME teachers are not aware of the provisions under the Teachers Registration Act and that is the reason there is a lot of confusion, says Minister for Education Premila Kumar.

Parents decide

THE Ministry of Education will respect the decision of parents who decide not to send their children to school when classes resume.

Recruitment drive

THE Ministry of Education’s recruitment drive for heads of schools will be held in April every year.

Graduate teachers

TEACHERS who are not graduates in Education are not teachers, says Minister for Education Premila Kumar.

PAGE 5

Sugar prices

THE increase in sugar prices was long overdue, says Sugar Cane Growers Council CEO Vimal Dutt says.

Farmer welcomes price increase

A FARMER in Tavua has welcomed the increase in sugar price but questioned whether farmers would “see” the benefits promised in the form of an increased in annual cane payments.

Misleading information

THE Fiji Sugar Corporation says it seriously concerned about misleading information being published about the organisation. NFP – FLP reacts.

PAGE 6

FRA costs

IT will cost the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) over $6 million to open up the roads that were damaged during TD03F and Cyclone Cody, says Infrastructure Minister Jone Usamate.

PAGE 7

Sailing program

THE Uto Ni Yalo Trust (UNYT) and the Fiji Arts Community Fundraiser for Colin Philp signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to spark a 10-year program that will put at least 50 people through the UNYT’s Level 1 Introduction to Traditional Sailing and Environmental Stewardship Programme.

Pre-election voter survey

The Fijian Elections Office yesterday launched its pre-election voter Survey for the 2022 General Election on Friday January, 21.

Possible catastrophe

UNSUSPECTING moviegoers at Village 4 Cinemas in Lautoka avoided a possible catastrophe on Thursday night when a huge blaze destroyed a three story building located next door.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

We have seven pages of letters to the editor inside… on Pages 8,9,20,21,22,23 and 24.

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PEOPLE

Read about: Jess Karan

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BUSINESS

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PAGE 42

FTU responds

THE Fiji Teachers Union says this is not the right time for Education Minister Premila Kumar to advocate for how classrooms should be set-up.

2m distancing

IT will be impossible to maintain the two-meter social distancing of students in classrooms and COVID-19 cases will continue to be recorded in schools.

PAGE 43

Water infrastructure

The WATER Authority of Fiji sustained damage of up to $1.65 million during TC Cody and TD03F, says Minister for Infrastructure Jone Usamate.

FEATURES and OPINIONS

We have some top articles for your weekend reading pleasure…

PAGE 12 – Fiji’s Women Trailblazers  – By AJAY BHAI AMRIT

BULA readers, this week, I was ecstatic when I turned on the television to watch the BBC World News headlines and there in full view on the screen was our very own Cheerieann Wilson the Fiji TV news anchor, who was describing the effects of the tragic volcanic eruption in the neighbouring Kingdom of Tonga.

Page 28 – Volcanoes and cyberstalking – By ILAITIA B. TUISAWAU

IN April 2011, I attended one of the first cybersecurity workshops in the region held at the SPC headquarters in Noumea. It was for both policy and technical stakeholders. A mixed moderate sized group attended from Fiji, with reps from various governments departments, USP, and other regional organisations.

Page 30 – Tribute to Prof Brij Lal – By DOUG MUNRO

THE news of the death of Emeritus Professor Brij Vilash Lal on December 25, 2021 sent high voltage shockwaves among his friends and throughout his constituencies – the worldwide girmit studies community, the academic world of current Fiji politics, and imperial and diaspora studies generally.

Pages 32-33 – FT Anniversary – Tonga takes Minerva Reef – By ANA MADIGIBULI

DESOLATE stretches of reef 500 miles south-east of Suva were the scene of two of history’s strangest ceremonies in 1972. The King of Tonga in the uniform of Tonga Defence Force general watched a group of his subjects raise the Kingdom’s flag on tiny artificial islands on Minerva Reef.

Page 34 – importance of reading – By RAJNESH LINGAM

THE importance of reading is completely undeniable. Reading is an exercise for the mind. It helps children calm down and relax. Reading opens doors of new knowledge to enlighten their minds. Children who read grow up to have better cognitive skills. Reading is good for everyone, not only children or young adults. There was discussion last week and this week on the editorial penned by the editor-in-chief (FT: 13/01) titled ‘Let’s not forget to read’.

Page 36 – Kiss and a bear hug – By COLIN DEOKI

“Are you a hugger? So when was the last time someone gave you a bubu kiss and a bear hug? Ever since our children were little we would always hug and kiss them and tell them repeatedly how much we loved them.

Page 37 – Fiji in 2022 – By SADHANA SEN

FIJI took over the chairing of the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) last year, and Fiji’s Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama is hoping to host an in-person Forum Leaders Retreat in Fiji soon. After two years of leaders’ meetings via Zoom, the opportunity to meet in person will be valued.

Page 41 – Champion of the ocean – By ALUMECI NAKEKE

GIVE Iliapi Tuvunia a pen and paper and he’d probably write a book about his experiences as a skilled fisherman and seaman. The 43-year-old father of four has known fishing all his life.

SPORT

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