Crime on the rise in Port Vila

On Wednesday 25 January 2023, Police in Port Vila arrested a boy from Fresh water who broke into the Ta Tacos Restaurant in George Pompidu area.

Police are advising and appealing to the general public to take extra precautions to look after their properties.

According to Police, it's important to strengthen the neighbourhood watch programme.

The neighborhood watch programme has been introduced within some of the communities.

Increase in volcanic activity at Vanuatu’s East Epi sub-marine volcano

The volcanic alert level has been increased to Alert Level 1.

The Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department has received reports of steam over the sub-marine volcano area around 7.48am (local time).

There is also reports of Sulphur dioxide followed by phreatic explosions propelling ash some 100 meters high.

People on Epi, Tongoa and the surrounding islands have been advised to stay clear of the coast as phreatic explosions may continue and could generate small waves.

Vanuatu’s Ambae volcano remains at Alert Level 2

The Volcanic Alert Level remains at Level 2.

Manaro Vui volcanic activity is continuing in the major level of unrest, consistent with the Volcanic Alert Level 2.

Latest data analysis from the monitoring system shows volcanic earthquakes and emissions of steam, gas and/or ash at the cone inside Lake Manaro Vui.

However, the Volcanic Alert Level is maintained at Level 2.

Vanuatu chiefs' HQ burns to the ground

The fire broke out about 1am Monday local time.

Police are investigating the cause of the fire in Port Vila.

The Malvatumauri Nakamal is a custom parliament for all Vanuatu's chiefs.

"This Nakamal was the identity of the people of Vanuatu. It symbolised the unity of the custom of the Vanuatu and the law, peace and order of communities in Vanuatu," said Chief Willie Plasua.

He told all chiefs around the country that while it is a major loss, it is only temporary.

Vanuatu school students to return to school on 6 February

A statement from the Ministry of Education said the Ministry encourages parents, teachers, school principals and community leaders around the country to support children returning to school.

Minister Leingkone is requesting all boys and girls who turn six years or older by 31 May 2023, including those with disabilities, to be enrolled to start Year 1 or above in the 2023 academic year.

Five months of Vanuatu court data lost in ransomware attack

This attack resulted in five months’ worth of data loss.

Chief Justice Vincent Lunabek revealed this to distinguished guests, including Head of State Nikenike Vurobaravu, Prime Minister Ishmael Kalsakau, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Lands Sato Kilman, and Justice Minister John Still Tari Qetu, during the 2023 official opening of the Courts of Vanuatu last week.

Nonetheless, the Courts were able to save some offline data from the court system, in regard to registration and completion of cases from the system as of the end of October 2022.

Vanuatu launches National Air Quality Taskforce

The taskforce is part of the government’s project through the Ministry of Climate Change.

Director of the Department of Environment, Touasi Tiwok said there is an urgent need to address the many gases that make up greenhouse gas emissions in the country because they come from both energy-producing and non-energy-producing sources.

“As from now, we have no standard in place, which is why there are many complaints from the public about imports of vehicles.”

New Vanuatu school year starts on 6 Feb

All primary and secondary school principals and teachers have been advised to be in their respective schools by today, 23 January to resume duty.

Term One will commence on 6 February and end on 5 May.

The second term begins on 22 May 22 to 18 August and the final term starts on 4 September to 1 December 2023.

The duration for all terms is 13 weeks.


Photo supplied  file  Caption: Vila East School


Cyclone Irene causes minor damage in Vanuatu

The category 1 cyclone made landfall in the southern and central parts of the country on Wednesday night with damaging gale force winds of 75Km per hour with gusts up to 100km affecting Tafea and Shefa province.

On Thursday morning, TC Irene caused continuous torrential rain, high winds, and rough seas with heavy swell

According to reports from Santo, communities from North West Santo sheltered in caves on higher ground.

No casualties have been reported.

Flooding, power cuts in Vanuatu capital as Cyclone Irene hits

RNZ Pacific's correspondent in Port Vila said there's flooding in some areas of the capital and road blocks caused by fallen trees.

Hilaire Bule said some parts of Port Vila were enduring power cuts.

Irene has caused mainly damage to the fruits trees such as avocado and banana.

The Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazard Department said Irene is expected to hit the Island of Tanna, in south Vanuatu at midday Thursday local time.

A red alert is in place for Tafea, Shefa and Malampa provinces, while Penama and Sanma provinces are on yellow alert.