The Water Authority of Fiji (WAF) held two separate sessions of consultations with the villagers and community leaders in the villages of Viria and Naqali..
WAF held a morning session at 10am at the Viria Village Hall, while the second consultation took place at 4pm at the Naqali Village Hall in Naitasiri.
Discussions at the consultations centred on the benefits of the Rewa River Water Supply Scheme Project and the need for members of the communities to be made aware of the purpose and implementation of project.
WAF General Manager Planning, Design and Construction, Mr Nemani Waqanivalu said that it was imperative for WAF to hold such engagement to create more awareness of the project with the relevant stakeholders and the public at large.
“We are thankful to those that took the time out to come and hear us out and to learn more about this water project and it is only proper that we engage the community as many of them are the rightful owners of the resources and the land, and that is the whole purpose of this activity – to come out and speak to them and create more awareness, so that they are informed of the works that will soon take place in the area,” explained Mr Waqanivalu.
Mr Waqanivalu said that positive feedback were received from the attendees.
“We received a lot of good feedback from the people and that is what we want and this exercise is basically designed for us to create that communication and dialogue with the people and the Authority,” said Mr Waqanivalu.
Turaga na Vunivalu – Viria, Ratu Joseva Malobitu expressed his gratitude to the Authority for holding the consultation.
“I am very thankful to the Fijian Government and the Water Authority of Fiji for coming to Viria Village in bringing and delivering to us the information about this water project and the upcoming massive work which will soon take place at Viria, along the Rewa River. A project that will greatly benefit the lives of many Fijians,” explained Ratu Malobitu.
Viria Village Headman, Savenaca Matayawa also thanked WAF for visiting their village.
“The awareness that has been undertaken by WAF will not only benefit us at Viria, but all Fijians in this country. We, the villagers of Viria are very thankful, we do not have any hesitations with this project as it will greatly assist many Fijians, for the common good and the lives of the people. We also have the support of the natives of Viria, who are residing abroad,” said Mr Matayawa.
Meanwhile, the Authority will be holding similar consultations within the area in the coming days and the confirmed dates, times and venues will be made known in due course. Construction works for the Gravity Pipeline from Waitolu to Waila and site establishment works for the Water Treatment Plant at Viria is expected to begin by July this year.