16 Sep 2005

Fiji government cancels Japan-funded jetty

9:17 am on 16 September 2005

The Fiji government has backed down and cancelled the construction of a controversial Japanese-funded, US$6 million fisheries jetty in Lami in the face of fierce public opposition.

Radio Fiji says it understands the decision to cancel the project was taken at a cabinet meeting this week.

The project had been strongly backed by the ministry of fisheries and its officials and construction was about to start when the prime minister intervened.

The radio says the decision to cancel is an embarrassment to both the governments of Fiji and Japan.

The fisheries minister, Konisi Yabaki, would not comment on the cancellation but said proper channels would have to be followed to inform the Japanese government.

Lami residents and landowners had mounted a fierce campaign against the jetty on environmental grounds and threatened to file a High Court injunction to stop its construction.