New and improved water project to ease water woes

Caption: Minister for Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management Hon. Sakiasi Ditoka, Assistant Minister Hon. Jovesa Vocea and Provincial Administrator (PA) Ba Mr. Josefa Rokonai with residents of Tavarau in Ba after the commissioning of their Ecological Purification System (EPS) Water Project.

SUVA – The Tavarau Ecological Purification System (EPS) Water Project will enable approximately 300 people in the sugarcane farming community of Tavarau in Ba to have access to clean and safe drinking water.

Tavarau Water Supply Dam 2 President Mr. Vijendra Sharma said residents of the settlement were grateful to the Government for this much-awaited help.

“Before we drank water directly from the source. There was no filtration system in place, so during the rainy season, we would face a lot of problems. Before we used to advise our neighbors to store water in drums, buckets, and water tanks when the water is clean because whenever it would rain, the water would be dirty,” Mr Sharma said.

“With this EPS system, water is filtered so it is clean. We have waited for this development for a very long time, and today, this community is very lucky to be chosen as a recipient of this assistance from the Government. Our responsibility now is to manage this system safely so it can serve us in the long term.”

Funded at a cost of more than $45,000, the Tavarau EPS Water Project was implemented under the Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management’s High-Risk Water and Sanitation Programme.

Mother-of-three Mrs. Paar Wati has been residing in the community of Tavarau for the past 30 years. Since then, Mrs Wati and other women from their community have had to endure the struggles of fetching water for their daily livelihoods.

“Before we used to go and wash clothes with our big basins in a nearby creek,” said Mrs Wati.

They have to walk at least 200 meters to get to the creek.

“Sometimes we also have to go and bathe at the creek. In terms of water for our daily consumption, we would boil water daily so it is safe. But today we are very thankful to the Government for funding this project. Now, we do not have to worry about all that, the water is clean and the supply is consistent.”

In commissioning the project last week, Minister for Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management Hon. Sakiasi Ditoka said the Tavarau EPS Water Project was not just about providing water, but also about protecting the environment.

“The ecological purification system utilises natural processes to clean the water, minimising the use of chemicals and reducing the ecological impact. This aligns perfectly with Fiji’s commitment to sustainable development and environmental protection. Access to clean and safe water is a basic human right, and it is essential for the health and well-being of all individuals. The installation of the ecological purification water system is a testament to the Government’s commitment to fulfilling its constitutional mandate to provide clean and safe water in adequate amounts to all Fijians at all times,” Hon. Ditoka said.

Caption: Tavarau Water Supply Dam 2 President Mr. Vijendra Sharma and his wife, Mrs. Paar Wati at their home in Ba.