Aussie Structural Engineer offered

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HELPING HAND: Cabinet Ministers, including the Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Papali’i Niko Lee Hang, will welcome the assistance from Australia.

HELPING HAND: Cabinet Ministers, including the Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Papali’i Niko Lee Hang, will welcome the assistance from Australia. (Photo: Government)

Australia has announced additional humanitarian assistance to support Samoan and Tongan communities devastated by Tropical Cyclone Gita.

For Samoa, an Australian Structural Engineer will assist with damage assessments.

Prior to striking Tonga, Gita struck Samoa as a Category Two storm. 

In response to a request from the Samoan Government, Australia will provide A$155,000 (T$307,000) to support debris clearance, aerial surveillance and food assistance for those who have been displaced. 

The assistance is part of Australia’s pledge to stand by its close friends and neighbours in the Pacific.

For Tonga, Australia’s additional funding of $3 million ($5.9m) will support the work of the Red Cross Movement, the Tongan Women and Children’s Crisis Centre and Australian NGOs as they deliver urgent help to affected communities, such as shelter and protection services for women and children.

Australia will also support the Tonga’s longer term recovery efforts, for example through helping to restore critical infrastructure and health and education services.

Australia has already sent two ADF C-17 Globemaster flights with humanitarian supplies and has released supplies pre-positioned with the Tongan Red Cross.

These include tarpaulins, sleeping mats, water purification tablets, tool kits, cooking equipment and hygiene items to assist over 2,000 people in need.

We are working closely with the Tongan Government and humanitarian partners who are distributing these supplies to families left homeless by the cyclone.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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