New Caledonia

Ni-Vanuatu students in New Caledonia still waiting for government allowances

Tony Wright, a former Port Vila MP who is in New Caledonia, said the students cannot stay at the campus because of outstanding bills.

Mr Wright said according to reports he's received, the students haven't been paid their allowances for November.

He said some ni-Vanuatu communities in New Caledonia have been fund raising to assist them.

The nuns said they are happy to house the students.

Last week marked the end of the study year but the students are unable to return to Port Vila because the borders is closed due to the pandemic.

Forum Ministerial Committee to observe New Caledonia’s independence referendum

Ratu Inoke is joined by Ali’ioaiga Feturi Elisaia, High Commissioner of Samoa to Fiji.

The Committee will be supported by the Forum Secretary General, Henry Puna, and staff of the Fiji Government and Forum Secretariat.

The committee was deployed by the Pacific Islands Forum to observe New Caledonia’s third and final independence referendum under the 1998 Noumea Accord on December 12.

New Caledonia hospital demands payment from Vanuatu hospital before it receives patients

The hospital in New Caledonia is concerned at an already burgeoning debt for services that has not been paid by the Vanuatu Government.

Medipole Hospital says it's owed over 41 million vatu, or $US359,000 dollars, for medical treatment received by government leaders and senior civil servants.

Now it's asking for pre-payment of ten million vatu, or approximately $US87,000 dollars, before additional patients can be sent from Vanuatu.

Vanuatu backs Kanak call to delay vote on independence in New Caledonia

Prime Minister Bob Loughman told parliament he will raise his concerns with the French ambassador, Pierre Fournier, in Port Vila.

The Kanaks have asked Paris to delay the referendum because they are still mourning family members who died during the pandemic.

272 people have died in New Caledonia from Covid and about half of those victims were Kanaks.

The respect required within traditional ceremonies of mourning within Melanesian culture means activities such as political awareness and campaigning cannot take place.

Government probes passengers on cargo flight to Vanuatu

Two of the passengers were tested positive for Covid-19 during the routine testing at the quarantine facility in Port Vila on Sunday.

The Government’s Public Relations Officer in the Prime Minister’s Office, Fred Vurobaravu said they want to know why the passengers were allowed on the flight given New Caledonia has cases of the highly contagious Delta variant of Covid-19.

The French overseas territory has been under a lockdown since early September, due to the worsening Covid-19 crisis.

2 Covid border cases in Vanuatu

The two cases are passengers who traveled to Vanuatu from Noumea, New Caledonia last Friday.

The travelers were part of 18 who had earlier tested negative for Covid and were cleared to travel to Vanuatu.

The Ministry of Health said none of them showed any signs or symptoms of Covid-19.

The ministry said urgent additional tests are being carried out on the remaining 16 passengers.

All of them are in a government-run facility where they are undertaking 14-days of mandatory quarantine.

New Caledonia flights halted over health pass dispute

Flights by Air Caledonie from Noumea to Mare, Lifou and Ouvea have been suspended until further notice.

The pass can be obtained once seven days have elapsed after the second jab of an mRNA vaccine and 28 days after getting other vaccines.

It is also available for those who have had a fresh negative test or proof of having recovered from Covid-19.

The provisions are resisted by several groups, including unions, which also reject the new local law, making vaccinations compulsory by the end of the year.

New Caledonia chief demands halt to vaccines

Henri Dokucas Naisseline said the vaccination obligation deprives people of fundamental rights of freedom and respect for human dignity.

The high chief of the Gaumha district on the island of Mare has decided to stop the vaccination drive in all the tribes under his control, suggesting the vaccine is dangerous.

However, he said those who wish to get the vaccine can still get it.

In August, the government launched an inoculation campaign in the mainly Kanak Loyalty Islands, called Vacci'tribs, in the hope of vaccinating 80 percent of the population by January.

New Caledonia records 25th death since delta outbreak began

New Caledonia has recorded its 25th death since the delta outbreak of Covid-19 began at the beginning of September.

Health officials are reporting about 5000 people a day are receiving their first jab - with long queues of people waiting to be vaccinated in Noumea and the outer islands.

On the outskirts of Noumea in Ko We Kara, a 'vaccine park' has been set up, and people arrive from six in the morning to register, while in the Loyalty Islands and the North vaccination is possible seven days a week without an appointment at dispensaries.

     

New Caledonia extends lockdown

On Thursday, seven deaths from COVID-19 were recorded, the heaviest daily toll since the discovery of the first indigenous cases of the disease on September 6.

It brings the death toll to 24 since September 6, announced by President Louis Mapou, during a joint speech with the French High Commissioner, Patrice Faure.

A total of 211 people are in hospital, including 29 in intensive care.