He says the facility has lost some of its skilled staff and the Ministry is looking for people to take up the vacant posts.
’’We need vet officers, we need pathologists, we need plant breeders, animal breeders, chemists, and there is a lot that we need in here. We hope that people will be enticed to come and contribute and of course have a career in agriculture.”
Seruiratu says the Ministry is also sending out staff on short term and long term courses to upgrade their skills to cater for the loss. Source FBC News
From Fijileaks Archive:
What about the Project Paper? When PS Agriculture Ropate Ligairi asked the chief economist to get the Project Paper containing the details about the farm, the project paper suddenly disappeared. In 2009, Apisai Ucuboi, then Deputy PS transferred Ligairi out of the then Fiji College of Agriculture (FCA) to PAO Northern. This after being allegedly pressured by Unaisi Waibuta, who was the Senior Lecturer at FCA. It was done, according to sources, to make way for Unaisi to become the Principal of FCA.
The post of Senior Lecturer was given to her although the management board had endorsed Poasa Tabuaciri, a Master of Science graduate in Animal Science. Tabuaciri, we have been told, was so frustrated with the decision that he decided to do his Ph.D straight after that and is now a lecturer at USP, Alafua campus.
The merger of various colleges following the formation of FNU saw Unaisi, allegedly with the help of her brother, got transferred to the ministry as Senior Research Officer - Livestock. This position shouldn't have been given to her because she does not have any qualification on livestock or research for that matter, claim ministry insiders. She again applied for the post of Principal Research Officer - Livestock and got it after the then Minister Joketani Cokanasiga overturned the management board decision that EronI Tamani was the best candidate. Tamani was really frustated and went on AWOL to Australia. He returned to Fiji and lectured at FNU and is now back as PRO -Livestock.
As PRO-Livestock she brought down the livestock research to its knee. She was then given the Director Crop Extension post, assisted by her husband Uraia Waibuta, who was then the Deputy PS. Sources claim that many of the Waibutas' relatives are now working in the Ministry - kai vata appointments. They say all these was achieved through another character - Apisai Ucuboi - the former Deputy Permanent Secretary Ministry of Agriculture - the brother of Unaisi Waibuta.
Rumors have circulated that Paula Tuione has been promised a Principal post in the Ministry as a TOKEN OF APPRECIATION. The Chief Economist, Ilimeleki Kaiyanuyanu, is now demoted because he continued to decline orders by A/PS Uraia Waibuta for his son to be given a senior position in the Economic Division. Jone Volau, it is believed, has now replaced the demoted Kaiyanuyanu, because he was the one tasked by Uraia Waibuta to ensure the promotion of his son and they both hail from Rewa. Agriculture Scam is still rife. Welcome to the new "Animal Farm"!