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1st FORUM ON NSC FOR EMERGENCY WATER RESPONSE CONVENED10552481 750900651675205 5307545832498623877 n

The National Steering Committee on Emergency Water Response to the prolonged dry spell currently affecting most part of Fiji was convened today by the Permanent Secretary for Rural & Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, Mr Filipe Alifereti.

Mr Alifereti reminded the forum on the need to work together in order to respond effectively to the need of the communities affected.

“We will need to pull our resources together and respond collectively. This is important in minimizing risks on the national economy, agricultural production and on the health and education of the people, among other things.

“Our priority right now is to ensure that schools affected continue to open as students prepare to sit for their external exams,” Mr Alifereti emphasized.

The forum also deliberated on the need to look at long term solutions and how best resources could be utilised as people affected by the dry spell continue to increase.

Furthermore, Mr Alifereti urged the forum to also plan for the worst case scenario should the dry spell continue.

The Director National Disaster Management, Mr Manasa Tagicakibau also updated the forum on how the Ministry has been responding to the current dry spell.

“We continue to deliver water to affected communities, schools and government stations including the maritime islands,” Mr Tagicakibau said.

He further stated that the Ministry has already delivered 17,690,820 litres of water Fiji wide at a cost of $1,050,957.00. In the Central Division, 712,000 litres of water has been delivered; 11,244,650 litres in the Eastern Division; 2,152,000 litres in the Northern Division and 3,582,170 in the Western Division.

While there is still no sign of immediate relief, Mr Tagicakibau is calling on the public to use water wisely and to store water as rainfall was experienced in some parts of country yesterday and today.

The National Steering Committee on Emergency Water Response comprising of permanent secretaries was established to provide guidance, direction and resources to the Divisional Taskforce who is responsible for the carting of emergency water to affected communities.

The Ministry is also urging the public to call the following numbers should they need assistance in relation to the prolonged dry spell:
Northern Division – 828 3952
Savusavu Office – 885 0099
PA Bua’s Office – 883 6027
Western Division – 666 1800
Eastern Division – 331 3400
Central Division – 347 7000
National Emergency Operation Centre – 331 9250