7 Feb 2008

1,000 people in Vanuatu affected by Gene devastation

3:14 pm on 7 February 2008

About a thousand people on Vanuatu's Futuna island are believed to be affected after cyclone Gene damaged crops and food gardens.

Cyclone Gene earlier caused seven deaths in Fiji and thousands of people there have been affected.

The Vanuatu Disaster Management Office's general manager says the cyclone caused damage to Futuna island only.

Job Esau says the cyclone destroyed food gardens and homes on the island.

"Most areas that received damage were the gardens. Over 150 gardens have been damaged. 15 to 16 houses were completely damaged. Although the cyclone has only hit the gardens, they belong to everybody. So we are talking about the entire population of Futuna, which is over 1000 people."

Job Esau says officials will hold a briefing today to decide on what kind of help they'll provide to the residents.