Jennifer Ann Downes was found dead in Fiji. Picture: Supplied
Jennifer Ann Downes was found dead in Fiji. Picture: Supplied

Aussie mum’s death in Fiji ruled murder

EMOTIONAL tributes have flown for the Australian mother of three who was found dead in her Fiji home this week.

This comes as local police confirmed the death of Jennifer Ann Downes, also known as Jenna Lusaka, has been classified as murder following a post-mortem investigation in Suva.

Her husband Henri Lusaka John - an Australian citizen originally from Congo - is reportedly under police guard in Suva's Colonial War Memorial Hospital.

Friends took to social media to say goodbye to Ms Downes.

"You brought sunshine wherever you went. I am sorry someone took it upon himself to cut your life short. The world was a better place with you in it," a friend wrote.

"I will never forget your positivity, your big smile and our friendship."

Jennifer Ann Downes with her husband Henri Lusaka John. Picture: Facebook
Jennifer Ann Downes with her husband Henri Lusaka John. Picture: Facebook

"I'll remember you! your family will remember you! Your kids will remember you! your friends will remember you!"

"You will live on in our hearts and will be spoken of fondly FOREVER!"

"Rest in Peace and eternal love my dear friend."

Another friend posted "whilst reading the paper at lunch I learned of your passing. Cannot believe it. Rest in peace."

Ms Downes was the logistics officer for the United Nations World Food Programme in Suva for two years before she died on July 23.

Her work bio said she left a role in logistics with the 2000 Sydney Olympics to pursue humanitarian work.

She reportedly met her husband while working in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Ms Downes also worked in Vanuatu and Australia.

Police carry Jennifer Downes' body from a house in Suva. Picture: Fiji Sun
Police carry Jennifer Downes' body from a house in Suva. Picture: Fiji Sun

The United Nations this week issued a statement saying that logistics was "more than just a job" for Ms Downes.

"It was a passion that she pursued with unmatched dedication and professionalism. She will be forever missed by our WFP family," the statement said.

"Our thoughts are with Jenna's children and loved ones during this difficult time."

Foreign Minister Marise Payne she was deeply saddened by the death of Ms Downes.

"My deepest sympathies go out to Jennifer's loved ones," she said.

"The Australian government has zero tolerance for violence against women and their children, both at home and abroad."