29 Jul 2013

Fiji committee head says no consultation on river diversion plan

5:30 am on 29 July 2013

The head of the Nadi Basin Catchment Committee in Fiji says the plan to dig diversion channels to alleviate flooding has been approved with very little local consultation.

The Nadi Town Council has announced the $150 million US dollar project but Bryan Watson says it will run through private land that is not currently threatened by flooding.

He says those landowners have not yet been approached about the plan.

He also says the channel diverting water to Nadi Bay would create a new tsunami risk with saltwater being able to run right up the channel into the town.

Mr Watson says the most recent visit of the Japanese International Consultancy Agency to Fiji did not involve any meetings with important stakeholders.

"I think they should consult more. I know for a fact that the JICA visit was very much a surprise for much of the government workers around the town who are working here. I don't believe there's been sufficient consultation with the whole of the town and I know for a fact that none of the landowners have been consulted."

Bryan Watson.