The Water Authority of Fiji (WAF) held two forum sessions with its business and domestic – residential customers at the Tanoa Waterfront Hotel, Conference Room in Lautoka today (21/02).
While opening the Customer Forum, WAF General Manager Customer Services and Acting General Manager Operations, Mr Sekove Uluinayau said that the forum was a platform to formally engage with customers in the Western Division on a regular basis.
“The purpose is to provide updates on WAF developments and plans and discuss issues arising and this platform gives us the opportunity to listen to you, and your views as well as your feedback on our service delivery. The main aim of this forum is to basically foster Trust, Value as well as Understandings for you, our customers,” said Mr Uluinayau.
Mr Uluinayau said that the forum also provides a platform to have a clear demarcation of the representative’s views and it was imperative to separate the business customers from the domestic customers.
“Our customers in the Western Division are close to the Authority as we have been regularly in contact, many of you have been through the recent major water disruptions – but you must look at it in the bigger picture and the long run for the generations to come, we are conducting these water shutdowns in order to improve our services – for the common good and betterment of our Nation, particularly here in the Western Division.”
Mr Uluinayau said that WAF is responsible for providing access to quality drinking water and waste water services to over 151,010 residential and non-residential metered customers residing largely in urban areas.
“WAF’s current water and wastewater network constitute more than 4,792 kilometres of pipes,” he said.
Mr Uluinayau also gave an overview of the ongoing upgrading works in the Western Division.
Mr Uluinayau said a total of $8.8 million is earmarked in the 2018-2019 Budget for the Water Supply Hydraulic Pipeline Improvement Works Program in the Western ($7.2 million) Division.
“This is to replace and increase the capacity of old, undersized, and faulty water pipes. This will also cater for the increase in demand from the growing population. Based on a recent 2017 Population and Housing Census by Fiji Bureau of Statistics, the province of Ba which includes Nadi, Lautoka, Ba and Tavua have had a significant increase in the proportion of its urban population by 14.6%. This indicates the enormous demand for water supply in these regions. These projects are scheduled to be completed between April and July of this year and is expected to benefit 8,000 people in the Western Division,” said Mr Ulunaiyau.
The participants were briefed and updated on a wide range of topics such as the WAF Achievements and the plans for 2019 and 2020, SCADA Network, Public Sector Investment Program (PSIP) update plans for 2019 and 2020 (Western Updates), Integrated Meter Management plans for 2019 and 2020, Subdivision, Liquid Trade Waste Management, Wastewater Services, Compulsory E-Billing Services as well as the Customer Charter.
Meanwhile, WAF will be the final round of customer forums in the Northern Division next week, Wednesday 27th February 2019 at the Hotel Takia Conference Room. The session times for the ‘Business customer forum’ will be from 8:30am to 12pm while the ‘Customer Council’ session time is from 1pm to 5pm.