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Ministry of Foreign Affairs Fiji

His Excellency's visit boosts morale for Christchurch Fijians

88 2019
 (pictured in the centre) His Excellency President Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konrote and First Lady Madame Sarote Konrote and other dignitaries at the National Remembrance Service at Hagley Park on last week Friday in Christchurch.

His Excellency President Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konrote and First Lady Madame Sarote Konrote joined New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and other dignitaries at the National Remembrance Service at Hagley Park on Friday in Christchurch in remembrance of those killed and injured in the March 15th shooting.
 
Supported by High Commissioner Filimone Waqabaca, who accompanied His Excellency, the visit was an opportunity for Fiji's Head of State to express support and condolences to the people of Christchurch and the Government of New Zealand.
 
Fijian community leaders in Christchurch acknowledged the presence of His Excellency as a major boost to their morale that complemented the assistance of the Fiji High Commission to families directly affected by the shooting.
 
Later that day, the Fiji High Commission partnered with the Fijian community in Christchurch to welcome Fiji's Head of State in a show of solidarity across cultural and religious lines at the Sanatan Hall in Christchurch.
 
An emotional President of the Canterbury Fijian Association, Mr. Sulio Vuniamatana, said the Presidential Visit meant a lot to Fijians in Christchurch as they never expected Fiji's Head of State to visit them.
 
His Excellency reiterated that his office and the Honourable Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama had reached out immediately offering condolences and support to the New Zealand Government and the people of Christchurch.
 
"Please remember the families and individuals affected by the Christchurch shooting. For those of you suffering the loss of immediate family members, my sincere condolences to you and your family."
 
Pundit Rup Prakash of the Shree Sanatan Dharam Pratinidhi Sabha Christchurch echoed calls by the High Commissioner Filimone Waqabaca for all Fijians regardless of cultural and religious lines to work together for the good of the community.
 
About two hundred Fijians turned up at the Sanatan Hall to witness the traditional Fijian ceremonies of welcome. His Excellency promised to return to Christchurch and expressed his appreciation for the warm welcome extended to him by the Fijian community

 

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Several members of Public Accounts Committee of the Fijian Parliament visiting Wellington this week took advantage of a visit to the Wellington City Council’s Southern Landfill yesterday to glean a few ideas for waste management in Fiji. This included the Hon. Alexander O’Connor, Assistant Minister for Health, Ratu Suliano Matanitobua, Opposition parliamentarian and Ms. Priya Chand, Parliamentary Secretary who were accompanied by the Fiji High Commission New Zealand staff.

The Southern landfill is an impressive setup particularly as it focuses on recycling and minimising the damage to the environment at the landfill.

 

Other remarkable features of the landfill were its gas collection, electricity regeneration, green waste mulching and water table management. The Hon. O’Connor, an engineer by profession, was particularly impressed and intends to develop a few ideas for the Fijian Government to consider.

 

The PAC members were invited to attend the Pacific PAC training seminar in Wellington facilitated by UNDP from the 12th to the 13th December.

The PAC members, including Deputy Chair, Hon. Mohammed Dean, MP, were hosted to afternoon tea at the Fiji Chancery.  It was an opportunity for the Parliamentarians to meet the Locally Engaged Staff at the Mission and also update the staff on the work and concerns of the Public Accounts Committee.

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