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This section outlines official Press and Media Statements issued by the Ministry of Information and Communications in addition to Press Releases from the Prime Minister's Office and other Government Ministries and Departments.

Site for Ha’apai’s New Hospital Officially Marked

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17th July, 2017 The Prime Minister Hon Samuela ‘Akilisi Pohiva today has officially marked the new site to replace the existing Niu’ui Hospital, in Pangai, Ha’apai.

The relocation and new construction of Ha’apai hospital is part of the Climate Resilience Sector Project (CRSP) implemented by the Climate Change Department of the Ministry of MEIDECC, jointly with the Ministry of Infrastructure, and was designed to increase climate resilience in social, economic and eco-systems to climate change and disaster risk in Tonga.

Funded by the Asian Development Bank in a total amount of $23.13 million for the CRSP, the new hospital as an important component of this project, is estimated to cost US$2.3 million.

Other main important components of the CRSP project include:

  1. construction of foreshores, sea walls and evacuation roads
  2. offering scholarships, short-term professional training and courses
  3. integration of climate resilience legal framework
  4. designing and monitoring of community vulnerability and disaster risk management assessments and plans
  5. improvement of water resources inventories and integrated water resources management (IWRM) and coastal zoning monitoring
  6. establishing of sustainable financing mechanism to support community based climate change adaptation responsive investments in a form of Trust Fund
  7. increase eco-system resilience
  8. construction and upgrading of schools to be more climate-proofing
  9. establishment of special management areas (SMAs) which recently visited by Their Majesties in Vava’u, and
  10. relocation and construction of a new hospital for Ha’apai.

In his address at the ceremony, the Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Siaosi Sovaleni, emphasized the importance of relocating the hospital from the very low-lying seaside of the existing hospital site to a safer and secured area.

Niu’ui Hospital locates no more than five meters from the low lying coastline of Lifuka Island which has been classified as extremely vulnerable to coastal erosion and flood from storm surges and potential sea level rise. The new chosen site to accommodate the new hospital, which is behind the Ha’apai High School compound, is a less hazard prone area.

The construction is set to start towards the end of this year, and to be completed in 12 months time. It is designed by ITS Limited of Tonga and supervised by SMEC Limited of Australia as project manager for CRSP.

CRSP is currently employing about 20 local professionals and engineers fulltime, apart from about 50 construction workers for all its activities.

The ceremony was dedicated in prayer by the retiring Head Minister and Chairman of the Free Wesleyan Church of Ha’apai, Rev. DR. Mohenoa Puloka, and assisted by the Church of Pangai and also Pilolevu and Taufa’ahau School, and attended Cabinet Ministers, ADB Regional Representatives, Government officials, Ha’apai District and Town Officers, and the people of Ha’apai.

Other speakers for the event were Robert Jauncey (Regional Director, Asian Development Bank), Mo’ale Finau (Governor of Ha’apai), and Hon. Dr Saia Piukala (Minister for Health).

MEIDECC is committed to Tonga’s country program to mitigate, alleviate and adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change.

Ceremonial events

ENDS

Issued by the: Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change & Communications

 
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