Fiji PM outlines maritime islands, Vanua Levu border reopening condition

Travels to and from the maritime islands and Fiji’s second biggest island of Vanua Levu hinges on reaching 80 per cent full vaccination coverage, the country’s Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama says.

Bainimarama outlined the condition in a recent national statement stating that chances of Vanua Levu and the maritime islands residents’ reuniting with their relatives and/or loved ones on the main island cannot happen unless 80 per cent of their respective target population have received both doses.

“Although we have almost reached the 80% fully vaccinated rate, Vanua Levu and some maritime islands are still behind. You must increase your vaccination rate to 80% as soon as possible. And your fully vaccinated relatives in Viti Levu will only return after you achieve this,” Bainimarama said.

It is unclear what the latest fully vaccination numbers in the maritime islands and the northern division are. However as of 21 September and based on their initial target population counts, 57.6 per cent of northerners had received both doses, and for the maritime areas, 34.4 per cent.

Among those fully vaccinated in the North are villagers of Yaro in Kia, Macuata who also became the first village to be fully vaccinated, and as a result have won themselves a fibreglass boat, courtesy of Silverwater Fibreglass, which will be handed over at a time and venue to be confirmed.

“I warmly congratulate the people of Yaro. You have done very well, considering that the vaccine came later to Vanua Levu. You jumped ahead, and now you will receive your reward. To the other fully vaccinated villages, your efforts are also equally recognised. One village receiving the prize does not diminish the importance of your contribution to Fiji’s vaccination drive.”

Bainimarama said the ministry of health will be deploying vaccines to maritime islands and communities in Vanua Levu to up their vaccination coverage.

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