Two dog handlers in the Fiji Corrections Service K9 Unit have graduated from a Passive Alert Drug Detection Course at the Queensland Corrective Service Academy.
They are Corrections Officer Class C Aisake Tukana and Corrections Officer Class B Vilikesa Rokolekutu who have graduated with certificates in Passive Alert Drug Detection.
As part of the 12-week course, the two handlers were each given a dog to train but unfortunately due to the many restrictions imposed due to the COVID-19 Pandemic they were not able to bring the two dogs back home.
One of the graduates is 29-year-old Aisake Tukana and he has been a dog handler for the past 6 years.
He says the experience was different to him as they had to master a different approach with the dogs to operate in drug detection exercises.
Another graduate 27-year old Vilikesa Rokolekutu says the 12-weeks was challenging but very educational.
He says it was his first trip overseas and he has never been away for that long from his wife and kids.
Queensland Corrective Service Chief Superintendent Alan Butler says course participants are put through an intensive training process and were evaluated via a theory-based exam and a practical assessment in the final week.
He says course participants will now know how to search for illicit substances in targeted areas when they return to their institutions.
Fiji Corrections Service Commissioner Francis Kean says to date they have had five of their personnel graduating from Queensland Corrective Service in specialized fields.
He says currently another two of their Junior Officers are yet to return to Australia and complete the second block of their studies once these restrictions are lifted.
Kean has thanked Chief Superintendent Butler and the Queensland Correction Service for opening its doors to the Fiji Corrective Service in the development and training of its personnel.
The new Fiji Corrections Service graduates are currently under quarantine in Nadi as a requirement of those travelling into Fiji and are expected to return to work next month.
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