Climate Change

Qelekuro villagers plead for new seawall

September 29, 2023 4:24 pm

Qelekuro in Dawasamu, Tailevu

Villagers of Qelekuro in Dawasamu, Tailevu, are contemplating what the future holds for their future generation.

The village is situated right next to the sea, and rising sea levels and natural disasters have destroyed what is left of their temporary sea wall as they now face an uncertain future.

56-year-old villager Matia Leka says the seawall was built by his forefathers’ years before he was born, but it is slowly being pounded into destruction.

Article continues after advertisement

[56-year-old villager Matia Leka]

“Even my elders never knew when it was built, but the rising sea level is taking away a little bit of our history and also threatening our homes.”

Like other villagers here, Leka is concerned about what the future holds if nothing is done to stop the oncoming tide.

“I have two children and three grandchildren, and I don’t know if our house will survive another 10 years if we don’t receive any assistance soon.”

Tribal leader Liuliu ni Yavusa, Avenisa Naivana, says last year, the men of the village got together to build a temporary seawall made of tires to help stop the tide from entering the village and homes, but to no avail.

He adds that people who are building new homes in the village are doing so uphill and as far away as possible from the coastal area.