22 Jan 2003

Fiji cabinet to meet today to discuss cyclone response

5:46 am on 22 January 2003

Fiji's cabinet will meet today to discuss assistance for victims of Cyclone Ami which devastated the northern and eastern islands on Tuesday last week.

The cabinet will consider the official government report on cyclone damage and will hear a briefing on rehabilitation work in progress.

The ministers will also decide on the funds to be used to pay for the assistance which is likely to run into many millioons of dollars.

It is widely expected that the government will divert funds from some existing programmes which will be suspended temporarily.

The cabinet will also hear a report on damage to schools and decide on assistance needed to enable them to resume classes.

Meanwhile, the supply of piped water has been restored to some parts of Labasa town but it will be some time yet before the system operates fully.

One report says people desperate for water have opened fire hydrants to meet their personal needs and clean their houses.