Roundup: Evacuees start returning home after tropical cyclone Mona moves away from Fiji

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SUVA, Jan. 7 (Xinhua) -- Evacuees at the Marist Campaigner Institute in Suva, capital of Fiji, have started cleaning their homes, hoping to return home on Monday after tropical cyclone Mona moves away from Fiji.

A Nanuku resident in a squatter settlement in Suva Iosefo Baleinatuvu said all evacuees had a good night sleep and were ready to return to their homes.

The Fiji Met Service said the Lau group islands in eastern Fiji remained under threat from tropical cyclone Mona.

Mona, a category 1 storm, was forecast to continue to move south in the waters between Fiji and Tonga and senior forecaster Amit Singh said it could still impact some southern islands.

Fiji's National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) advised the public to continue to take precautionary measures.

The NDMO said government operations and business were scheduled to continue as normal on Monday but said people should continue to monitor the weather and exercise their own discretion when making the decision to report to work.

The office said this was particularly relevant for people living in flood prone and affected areas.

The warning was made as several roads remained closed.

The Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) said 27 roads remained closed around the country mainly due to flooding.

A flood warning remained in place for all low lying areas, small streams and areas adjacent to major rivers including in Vanua Levu, Taveuni and the eastern half of Viti Levu.

Over 2,000 people have sought shelter in 40 evacuation centers around Fiji.

The Maritime Safety Authority confirmed that all shipping services have been cancelled on Monday.

As part of readiness, Commissioner Eastern and Commissioner Northern have been advised to prepare teams for initial damage assessment.

In Vanua Levu, Fiji's second largest island, shipping and air services have been closed until further notice.

But the central business district remained open for business with normal operating hours.

In 2016, Fiji was hit by the full force of tropical cyclone Winston, which left 44 people dead and destroyed tens of thousands of houses. Enditem

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