Fiji to send humanitarian response team to NZ

February 21, 2023 10:28 am

[Source: Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management]

Fiji will send a humanitarian response team to support New Zealand’s response to Tropical Cyclone Gabriel.

Minister for Rural Development and Disaster Management, Sakiasi Ditoka says the team will include personnel from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, the National Fire Authority, and the National Disaster Management Office.

Ditoka says the government formally offered its support to New Zealand following a telephone communication between him and his counterpart, Kieran McAnulty, last Sunday.

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[Source: Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management]

Ditoka says the deployment is expected to comprise 33 personnel, and other details of the deployment are still being finalized between the responsible agencies.

“We consider sending some assistance through our military forces who are well trained in this type of work and at the moment it looks like we have a troop of assault pioneers or engineers who are going to be helping in the disaster relief work and they are very capable if there are some engineering work as well and they are ready for that as well.”

He says the New Zealand government is a close ally of Fiji and an important part of our Pacific family.

[Source: Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management]

The Minister adds that New Zealand has always been there for Fiji in our time of need, and this deployment is just our way of saying we are there for New Zealand in the spirit of the Duavata partnership.

The Ministry is looking at sending the deployment team by the end of the week, and the team will be in New Zealand for three weeks, depending on the work that needs to be done.

“We also have an element which will help in their emergency operations centre, they will be coming from our NDMO and their will also be personnel from the National Fire Authority to help in that regard and the surge that is needed for the work in New Zealand and it at the moment it probably will take about two to three weeks, that is there initial thinking if not a month and then we will see how it goes on from there. If there needs to be some extension of that period then we will keep on carrying on the discussion with our New Zealand counterparts.”