Fijian PM urges stakeholders to update public on work post-cyclone Sarai

Source: Xinhua| 2019-12-30 17:05:48|Editor: Xiang Bo
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SUVA, Dec. 30 (Xinhua) -- Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama on Monday urged government officials and relevant stakeholders to regularly update the general public about the progress of work carried out after tropical cyclone Sarai.

The death toll from tropical cyclone Sarai in Fiji had risen to two.

One of the casualties was an 18-year-old who was swept away by strong currents on Saturday and a man in his 40s found in Naitasiri province on the main island of Viti Levu.

More than 2,000 people remain in 55 evacuation centers to date.

Organizations such as Energy Fiji Limited, Water Authority of Fiji, Fiji Roads Authority, the Ministry of Health and some other relevant agencies also provided briefing updates to Bainimarama.

Bainimarama received a comprehensive briefing on tropical cyclone Sarai from the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) and has directed all arms of government to hold back on any surveys until it is safe to do so. This has to do with the safety of emergency responders and personnel who will be reaching out to affected communities.

Bainimarama has assured affected communities the government is aware of their needs and is acting accordingly. He said that the restoration of utilities such as electricity and water will take time and Fijians must be patient.

The NDMO has now begun coordinating the various arms of government to mobilize and begin initial assessments in areas which are accessible on the two main islands.

NDMO Director Vasiti Soko said they are in touch with the four Divisional Commissioners who are in contact with their network of people on the ground.

Meanwhile, Fijian Minister for Health Ifereimi Waqainabete said people have to be wary of communicable diseases such as typhoid, dengue and leptospirosis and other water-borne diseases in the aftermath of tropical cyclone Sarai.

He said the government is working with the Water Authority of Fiji to ensure that clean and safe water is provided to all Fijians and it is people's responsibility to ensure that there is proper sanitation in their houses.