Fiji announces new curfew amid possible tropical cyclone threat
Suva, Jan 30 (IANS) Fiji has announced new curfew hours over a possible tropical cyclone moving towards the island nation.
According to Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office, the decision late Friday night came following a meeting presided by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Xinhua news agency reported.
To ensure those residents in the western and other parts of the country are well prepared for the current weather situation to worsen, the curfew will begin at 12 p.m. on Saturday until 4 a.m. on Monday.
While the curfew for the eastern, central and northern parts of the nation will begin from 4 p.m. on Saturday until 4 a.m. on Monday.
To deal with the Covid-19 pandemic, Fiji has maintained a nationwide daily curfew from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. since March 30, 2020.
The Fiji Meteorological Service said that the tropical depression of concern is expected to further develop into a tropical cyclone that is likely to be named tropical cyclone Ana by Saturday morning.
The National Disaster Management Office has urged Fijians to store enough water and food, and move to safe places such as evacuation centres set up by the government.
Currently, more than 2,000 people are sheltered in 56 evacuation centres across the island nation.
As a precautionary measure, schools closed on Friday while all maritime transport has also been suspended.
Last month, tropical cyclone Yasa hit Fiji, killing four people and causing extensive damage to houses and schools, especially in the northern part of the nation.
The tropical cyclone season in the South Pacific region runs between November and April every year.
Fiji is predicted to experience up to three tropical cyclones during the current season.