The Fiji Correction Service has started its Operation Musu Dovu for the 2020 season. FCS has been providing much needed labour to the Sugar Industry since 2016 to assist sugar cane farmers.
Deputy Commissioner of Corrections, Senior Superintendent Apakuki Qura said “the deployment of prisoners to assist and support this much needed economic activity has been a win-win for the farmers, Fiji Sugar Corporation, our country’s economy and those under our care”.
SSPT Qura explained that “despite the influx of cane harvesting machines into the industry in the two main sugar cane divisions, the demand for cane harvesting gangs is still in demand especially for farms on hilly terrain”.
“This year we have deployed a total of 126 prisoners into the western and northern division to harvest cane for 132 farmers.
“We expect to harvest approximately 16,900 tonnes of sugar cane this year compared to 13,011 tonnes in the 2019 season.”
SSPT Qura added “that the prisoners do get paid for their services and it is a much looked forward to period for prisoners who eagerly want to participate in cane harvesting and earn some income prior to being discharged”.
“The musu dovu operations is also a rehabilitation platform used to instill self-discipline, commitment to a good day’s work, develop a sense of earning real money and to assist these prisoners to have something in the bank when they are discharged. Most of all, such programs help them develop a sense of self-worth.”
The prisoners are involved with harvesting cane in Rakiraki, Tavua, Ba, Lautoka, Nadi, Seaqaqa and Labasa.