Vanuatu defeats NC in second international friendly; fraudulent work permits; missing Sarakata funds

Coach Moise Poida celebrates Vanuatu's win over New Caledonia with his players. Photo: Vanuafoot

Coach Moise Poida celebrates Vanuatu’s win over New Caledonia with his players. Photo: Vanuafoot

Vanuatu beat New Caledonia 2-1 in their second international friendly at Port Vila Stadium. The team came from behind to beat a strong New Caledonian side. Les Cagous’ goal came from Betran Kai, while Vanuatu’s two goals came from captain Fenedy Masauvakalo and defender Brian Kaltack. “I am very happy that my players can play as a team and win this important international friendly against one of the best team in Oceania”, said Vanuatu coach Moise Poida. “I thank the fans who came out to support us today and we will continue to work hard in training towards PNG OFC Nations Cup in Papua New Guinea in May 2016.”

Fraudulent work permit checklist forms have been reported to the media purporting to raise all the normal fees legally charged. The forms use the letterhead of the Department of Labour and Commissioner Lionel Kaluat says there is no such increase in the fees as printed in the form. Application fees have been raised from vt10,000 to vt16,000 and valid permit issue from vt200,000 to vt280,000. Kaluat appeals to employers to report any incident showing use of such fraudulent information.

Daily Post reports questions being asked by Luganville residents concerning the whereabouts of approximately Vt 90 million supposed to be in the Sarakata Funds (Sarakata Renewal and Special Reserve Funds). In hearings of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament in 2015 the monies could not be located and the Utilities Regulatory Authority also admitted not knowing. Luganville residents want to know where their contributions paid through their electricity bills are going.

The Arbitration Board has a new Chairman, Rodney Banga, following his appointment made by Minister Alfred Maoh. Appointed members now include Willie Karie, representing employers, and Ephraim Songi, representing employees.

Daily Post today also reports a new Citizenship Commissioner, François Batick, the former Principal Immigration Officer. He replaces Chief Aiden Lawrence.

In the Budget Session, now closed, Minister of Health Toara Daniel revealed that X-ray equipment is to be operational at Lenakel Hospital, many intending RSE workers needing X-rays for their work applications, Radio Vanuatu News reports. This will be much appreciated. The working Health appropriations are down this year as a result of a need to retire many health workers and pay retirement benefits.

Daily Post has a dramatic page one photo of Etas residents going over the dump site to find rubbish for “useables” – tins and plastic and glass bottles, and also for food waste which their animals appreciate.

Happy Easter everyone.