The Fiji Times: NGO’s Call for a Sustainable Response.

Heads of civil society organisations at the press conference in Lautoka.
  • The Fiji Times
  • 26 Jun 2020
  • By REPEKA NASIKO

EIGHT NGOs that make up the Fiji Civil Society Alliance are calling on Government and employers to take a more humanitarian approach when it tries to recover from the impact of COVID-19.

In a news conference in Lautoka yesterday, heads of six organisations spoke on the humanitarian issues Fijians were facing and the need for a sustainable and effective response.

Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre co-ordinator Shamima Ali said thousands of people were out of work and there was a need for a sustainable recovery plan.

She said Government lacked understanding the pain people were facing on a daily basis.

“146,000 jobs have been lost,” she said.

“Those of us who work in this area and others, who are on the ground who see their suffering, see it and that is something that they are not seeing.

“They are talking about the tourism bubble.

“How is it going to work? “People are looking forward to that because they want to believe in something good because there are so many bad things happening in their lives.

“So they really want to believe this.”

She added that Fijians were looking to Government to find a solution to their problems.

“Of course, we Fijians are surviving this because of the loloma that we have but how long will that last because we are all in the same storm?”

The NGOs at the event included the Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises and Development (FRIEND) CEO Sashi Kiran, Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre co-ordinator Shamima Ali, Social Empowerment and Education Programme director Chantelle Khan, Citizens’ Constitutional Forum (CCF) CEO Louchrisha Hussain, Fiji Women’s Rights Movement’s (FWRM) executive director Nalini Singh and femLINKpacific’s executive director Susan Grey.

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