10 Jul 2013

Fiji villager calls for help to reinforce emergency shelter

6:35 pm on 10 July 2013

A chairman of a village disaster committee says he has asked the Fiji government for assistance to expand an emergency house on high ground before the next flood hits.

Malikieli Namua from Dradabu village in Nadi says he was able to coordinate the evacuation of his village during last year's floods thanks to an effective grassroots system the government has put in place.

Since the floods in January and March last year, the Nadi Basin Catchment Committee has introduced a new system to warn people, including sirens and loudspeaker announcements in Fijian, Hindustani and English.

Mr Namua says the bure, or traditional house, is closer and on high ground, and better than a cold classroom for hungry people in wet clothes to stay in, but it needs to be bigger.