ITaukei Affairs Board Commits To Continu …FijiFirst
The iTaukei Affairs Board has reaffirmed its commitment to continuously improve the welfare of the iTaukei. At its meeting held on 20 April 2022, the iTaukei Affairs Board endorsed a range of measures that will bolster this commitment.
Recognising the movement of rural iTaukei villagers over the years resulting in new iTaukei settlements, the Board approved the establishment of 45 new iTaukei villages under the iTaukei Affairs (iTaukei Affairs Board) (Declaration of iTaukei Settlements as iTaukei villages) By-Laws 2010. Apart from enhancing security, the Board’s decision will improve their accessing Government assistance including cyclone rehabilitation and FNPF.
Supporting the Fijian Government’s commitment to leave no one behind by endeavouring to reach those furthest behind first, the Board endorsed an initiative for road access to the Tikina of Noemalu in upper Naitasiri and Roma village. The Board also endorsed a plan to rebuild the Cakaudrove Provincial Office, destroyed by fire in 2017.
Underscoring the high rural to urban migration, the Board agreed to strengthen its existing mechanism for reaching urban iTaukei people. iTaukei Affairs will coordinate this effort with the urban representatives of all Provincial Councils.
The Board underlined the importance of Roko Tuis, as articulated in the iTaukei Affairs Act, by supporting ceremonial and administrative measures that will elevate their significance. These measures will ensure that Roko Tuis discharge their mandated responsibilities, including the financial sustainability of their Provinces.
In a significant development, freehold land held in trust by the Minister for iTaukei Affairs before the formation of the Native Lands Ordinance 1940 will finally be returned to their iTaukei owners. These parcels of land will be transferred to the iTaukei Land Trust Board for administration and control for the benefit of their owners.
Prime Minister and Chairman of the Board, Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama, was delighted with the outcome of the meeting.
“Approving 45 new iTaukei villages is a significant milestone for the Board, but more importantly for the inhabitants. They’ve been requesting this over the years, which has now been granted. Overall, I am glad that the outcome of today’s meeting continues the Board’s tradition of supporting the Government’s broader development strategy,” said the Prime Minister.