New Caledonia

Another New Caledonia airport hit by protest

The domestic carrier Air Caledonie raised its return fares from Noumea by almost $US7 dollars when it restarted its service earlier this month.

The airline was grounded since March because of the Covid-19 outbreak.

The chiefs on Lifou already forced the island's airport to close last Friday, saying it would remain shut until the fare hike was rescinded.

They said the shareholders should wear the extra costs, and not the island's population.

The chiefs on Mare said they would block flights until there was a compromise.

New Caledonia extends Covid-19 lockdown

The decision was announced after talks involving medical experts, the French High Commission, the government and the customary Senate.

The extension was the second time that a week had been added to the original lockdown declared on 19 March.

From 20 April the emergency measures will be changed, with details of what will be eased to be announced in the course of next week.

The customary Senate had been in favour of extending the restrictions for longer while some leaders in the mainly Kanak Loyalty Islands province asked for the terms of confinement to be relaxed.

Group without lockdown accommodation concerned for older members

When the Ta'ofi Ke Ma'u performance troupe left their home island of Wallis in the Pacific they had no idea that what was going to be a nine-day trip would become a trip with no definite end date in sight.

The group of 25, who travelled to Auckland to perform at the Pasifika Festival on 13 March, have been stranded here since Covid-19 restrictions on gatherings forced its cancellation.

"We were so excited to come here, and so most of us it was the first trip outside of Noumea," said Niuola Petelo, 64, the group's president.

COVID-19: Ninth case in New Caledonia confirmed

Few details have been released but a government spokesperson said the last three cases related to either people who had arrived in the territory or had been in contact with people confirmed to have carried the virus.

More than 1000 people have been in isolation in hotels, but some of them have been allowed to leave under strict conditions.

Restrictions on movements have been in force in the French territory since Monday midnight.

New Caledonia records fifth Covid-19 case, ban on meetings start tonight

The order was announced by the president Thierry Santa and the French High Commissioner Laurent Prevost after two more infections were confirmed.

One case concerns a local pharmacist in her 60s who has not travelled recently, which means the virus is now considered to be in circulation in the community.

Since the announcement, a fifth Covid-19 has been confirmed.

The new regulations ban public and private meetings and entail the closure of non-essential businesses.

Supermarkets and pharmacies are allowed to remain open.

Sixth Covid-19 case in Tahiti, two in New Caledonia

Earlier in the day, the authorities said there was one case in Moorea and one in Tahiti.

In an updated statement, the government said a third had been confirmed Thursday.

The individual is reported to be a European tourist who arrived two days ago.

Last week, the first tourist was hospitalised with the virus after falling ill on the atoll of Fakarava.

The French High Commissioner Dominique Sorain said access will be tightened and only residents are now allowed to enter French Polynesia.

New Caledonian resident tests positive for coronavirus

The 80-year old man and his wife had been confined to their cabin on the Diamond Princess for 11 days.

His wife told the French radio station RTL that on receiving the test result he was taken to a hospital whose address she didn't know.

She said her husband showed no symptoms of the illness, but further tests were planned to confirm the diagnosis.

She says they both took all the precautions but still her husband caught the virus.

Almost 220 people onboard the cruise ship off Yokohama have tested positive to the coronavirus.

     

Bush fires wreak havoc in New Caledonia

That figure has been given by the Civil Security organisation, which has gradually extended its extreme fire risk warning to now nearly all of New Caledonia, including the islands of Ouvea and Belep.

With winds still strong, there is no immediate relief in sight.

The authorities say at the same time last year just under five square kilometres had been burnt.

A territory-wide fire ban will remain in force until 15 December.

The ban exempts the use of fire for cooking in domestic situations.

Single-use plastic bag ban starts in New Caledonia

From now on, single-use plastic bags are banned.

In a month, the ban will be extended to plastic plates and straws, and starting next May, plastic food packaging will be prohibited.

Per capita New Caledonians have reportedly used more than 200 plastic bags each year.

When the law was adopted by congress last year, some parties abstained from voting, suggesting the change was too sudden.

New Caledonia grabs four golds in judo

In the women’s lightweight category, New Caledonia's Jaycee Brival took gold, her team mate Rosa Delots silver, and the two bronze went to NCL’s Cloe Omo-Perraut and Fiji’s Veniana Ravesi.

For the women’s heavyweight open, there was a surprise victory in gold for Shanice Takayawa of Fiji. Poerava Temakeu of Tahiti settled for silver and the bronze was shared by Tahiti’s Rauhiti Vernaudon and Teraimatuatini Bopp.