From the Editor-in-Chief’s desk: Your June 16 briefing


Bula vinaka

Tonight, the permanent secretary for Health and Medical Services Dr James Fong announced a staggering 116 new cases. It is the highest we have recorded in a day. If it hasn’t already changed your line of thinking, hopefully this is a wakeup call for us all.

According to Dr Fong, 93 of the new cases were linked to the following existing clusters: Caubati – 7; Nasinu Police Barracks – 24; Navy – 3; CWMH – 14; Waila – 3; Sakoca – 5; Nawajikuma, Nawaka, Nadi – 2; Tramline, Nawaka, Nadi – 8; Muanikoso – 1; Reservoir Rd – 10; Navosai – 1; Nakasi – 1; Tacirua – 2; Grantham Rd – 2; and Vunimono – 10.

Three cases have been identified as primary contacts of earlier cases, and response teams are determining the cluster link.

Dr Fong said 13 cases are under investigation to determine whether they have links to other cases.

Investigations are also ongoing into three cases that were swabbed at the Valelevu and Raiwaqa screening clinics.

There are now also four cases in the Korovou area in Tailevu. Early investigations have revealed that one is a driver that was recruited into the Korovou COVID-19 response team. The other three cases are primary contacts of this driver – a relative and other members of the response team. Investigations are ongoing into how these cases contracted the virus, and the subdivisional medical team are working to contain this new cluster.

A 73-year-old patient at the CWM Hospital has died. The patient had been admitted to the hospital for almost a month for a severe non-COVID-related illness and tested positive 11 days ago. Whilst his prognosis was poor, this death has been classified as a COVID-19 death by the doctors treating him.

This is the third death due to COVID-19 during this current outbreak and the fifth COVID-19 death overall for Fiji.

Here are some stats for you:

  • 32 COVID-19 cases have recovered;
  • 943 active cases now in isolation;
  • 1252 cases during this outbreak that started in April 2021;
  • 1322 total cases in Fiji since the first case was reported in March 2020;
  • 367 recoveries and five deaths due to COVID-19; and
  • Seven COVID-19 positive patients have died from pre-existing non-COVID-19 related illnesses.

What else can we say, but please stay home!

Here are some stories that made the headlines in The Fiji Times’ edition for Wednesday, June 16.

KAILA! Remember we have the weekly Kaila! edition inside for the young at heart. It’s loaded with activities for children, lyrics and much more. Check it out.



Stringent movement restrictions

The big one on the front page is about: THE stringent movement restrictions presently in place will only be relaxed when at least 80 per cent of the eligible population is fully vaccinated, says Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr James Fong.

Case numbers

We have a story about tonight’s numbers.


Frustrated customers

PEOPLE who waited for up to six hours to collect their cargo from inter-island vessels at Port Mua-i-walu jetty in Suva yesterday vented their frustration at the manner officials conducted the exercise.

Adhere to rules

Police Constable Sevanaia Nadoki man the Laqere bridge checkpoint on Monday, May 17, 2021. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU

FIJI Police Force spokeswoman Savaira Tabua has called for members of the public to adhere to COVID-19 health and safety regulations.


COVID outbreak

FIJI’S COVID-19 outbreak has not spiralled out of control as it is still at a stage where it can be addressed quickly, says United Nations Development Programme Regional director Asia-Pacific Kanni Wingnaraja.


LOCKDOWNS have not contained the spread of COVID-19 in the Lami-Nausori area and while it is an important tool it has had a socio-economic impact on the population.



We have some very interesting letters on Pages 8 and 9.


In this popular section of the newspaper, read about: Siteri Tali

WHILE growing up in Matuku, Lau, in the early ’90s, Siteri Tali dreamt of traveling to Viti Levu and seeing the bright lights and big buildings in Suva City.


The big one on the back page is about: Levani Botia and the Flying Fijians


FRANCE-based backline utility Levani Botia will lead the Flying Fijians in the two Test matches against the All Blacks next month.

There’s more to read inside, but you’ll have to get a copy to know what we are talking about!


With things the way they are right now, have you thought of subscribing for home delivery? No hassles at all. You can wake up to an early edition every morning, fresh off the press. Check below for contact details for Setaita who can assist you.


I have been getting calls from people who miss the newsprint version. I acknowledge this. You could try reading the newspaper on the e-Edition platform if you are unable to get a copy at a store near you. It’s easy to hook up via mPaisa! You can contact us for details on or you can call Setaita on 7754078, or on 3304111 during office hours, to assist you.


You could also just follow a few steps and read The Fiji Times a few minutes later, live and direct! Here are the simple steps to follow:

1: Log onto 2: Select the SUBSCRIBE tab. 3: Register. 4: Select mPaisa payment option! You won’t know how good it is until you try it! It’s a different experience!

More Stories