The senior management of the Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management have been reminded to work smarter with the allocations the Ministry had been given in the 2020/2021 National Budget.

In addressing members of the Ministry’s Senior Management Board during their recent meeting, Minister for Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management Hon. Inia Seruiratu said

“Whatever comes our way, work must continue.”“It’s not about working harder, but it’s about working smarter. Let’s work smart,” he said.Hon. Seruiratu emphasised the importance of good and structured planning, which could lead to minimising costs, reducing wastage, improved productivity, and achieving better results.

The Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management is allocated $16.6million in the 2020/2021 National Budget.Of these, Government has set aside a total of $1.5million to complete projects undertaken under the Public Sector Investment Programme.

This includes the completion of the three government stations at Wainikoro, Macuata, Kavala in Kadavu and in Namarai, Ra, and a government quarters in Kubulau, Bua. These new stations will extend government’s physical reach to remote and rural communities and also allow physical access of these communities to services that would usually take a substantial amount of time and money to access.

In the coming financial year, the Ministry has also been allocated $2 million to carry out more rural infrastructure projects under its Community Access Road Footpath and Footbridge (CARFF) programme, while $1million has been set aside for the Ministry’s Self-Help Programme. 

Under the SHP programme, rural dwellers are assisted in the construction of basic amenities and other small projects.

The programme also provides assistance that encourages communities to initiate their socio economic sustainable development projects on a cost sharing basis with government, and by doing so, aims to instil a sense of community ownership over these initiatives. 

Government has also allocated $400,000 to the Ministry in the next financial year to repair and renovate several government quarters through the office of the Divisional Commissioners.

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