B. Government measures for dealing with the litter problem
The anti-litter campaign became a priority project for the Ministry of Housing, Urban Development, and the Environment. So much so that that the minister announced that "there was ample reason to dissolve a municipal council if it did not do enough to enforce the Anti-Litter Decree"(Fiji Daily Post, 20 March 1997). The Minister also convened a workshop to discuss the implementation of the Decree and announced that "all representatives of anti-litter enforcing authorities have been instructed to attend." Those statements are reflective of the power that the national government has over local government authorities.
A distinguishing feature of the Anti-Litter Act was the blanket publicity campaign that accompanied its implementation. During the month prior to the Anti-Litter Act coming into force, SCC mounted a major public awareness campaign. The news media was used to publicize the consequences of littering. Information was provided on appropriate receptacles for residential garbage disposal. The public was told that only solid garbage containers with tight-fitting lids were to be used. Plastic supermarket carry-bags, cartons etc. were unacceptable and the public was warned that anyone using such items would be prosecuted under the Anti-Litter Act. Radio interviews and news announcements were made in English, Fijian and Hindustani. Anti-litter awareness video clips were screened on television. The publicity included written contributions from the Lord Mayor, the Chairperson of the Health and Market Committee, and the Town Clerk. The purpose of the extensive campaign was to encourage civic pride among the general public and lend support to the effort by SCC to keep Suva clean. Some support was also provided by commercial enterprises that were partly sponsoring the publicity campaign. Community programmes were also held in densely populated residential areas such as Raiwaqa and Raiwai. SCC placed a number of large rubbish skips in key locations that were notorious as garbage dumping areas.
The litter problem is particularly pronounced around the produce market and bus terminal. Those areas were given special attention in the SCC publicity campaign. Printed material in English, Fijian and Hindustani was distributed to all market stall holders, instructing them to keep their stalls clean and to deposit all refuse in the bins provided for them. A large anti-litter sign adorned the front of the market. Tape-recorded messages were also used to reinforce the campaign.