Issue No. 41/2020 – Wednesday, 30 September 2020 (Kitiona Tausi)
The Funafuti Kaupule really supports the Kainaki II Seawall Project to progress into completion without delay. In fact, the project to build a seawall to the ocean side of the community hall belonging to the Vaitupu Community on Funafuti, “Kainaki II” has already been approved by the Lands Committee of the Funafuti Kaupule.
Therefore, work on the project has already begun 3-4 weeks ago and is progressing well. Yesterday, rumours spread that the project has been halted by the Funafuti Kaupule and no reason was known.
This morning, I had the opportunity to meet with the Funafuti Island Kaupule, Rev Teleke Peleti who is responsible for the island’s Development and Planning and we discussed the issue.
Rev Peleti confirmed that there was no order from the Funafuti Kaupule to stop the work, but there are minor matters that need to be straightened before it can cause disruptions to the work.
Rev Teleke said “there had been complaints received from the landowners about the impacts of the project to the land, the environment as well as to the people living nearby.
The Funafuti Kaupule immediately tried to straighten the matter and confirmed that, an environment impact assessment survey has been conducted as well as environmental social impact assessment survey but these reports have not been submitted to the Funafuti Kaupule Office.
Rev Peleti also revealed that there had been a minor change to the original design that was approved by the Funafuti Land Management Committee, ‘but this is not an issue and the change in the design has been accepted by the Committee.
Rev Peleti also explained that, he had a discussion with the Leader of the Vaitupu Community, Dr. Tapugao Falefou yesterday and they sorted out the matter and both agreed that the work should proceed.
I have not had the opportunity to do a story on the project itself, but I was able to take some photos from the work the workers had been doing this morning and also took some photos of the preparations of the material for the work.
This morning, the workers under the supervision of Mr. Seti Safega were working on drilling into the rocks on the reef while the tide was out, using shake hammers.
On land, they had other materials under preparation for the actual seawall work and also material like gravels brought from the main island, Vaitupu and ordered material inside containers.