Posts tagged Water Authority of Fiji

Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s Announcement of Water Authority of Fiji Bill Waiver

Nothing is more important to my Government than helping ordinary Fijians provide for themselves and their families.

And one of the best ways we can do that is to relieve the cost of living pressures on ordinary people.

We will never forget that it is the families of Fiji who come first.

That is why today is a great day for me as your Prime Minister. Because I have the privilege of providing details of a major initiative to relieve the debt burden on many thousands of our citizens.

My Government is writing off more than 13-million dollars in outstanding bills to the Water Authority of Fiji.

As many of you will already be aware, more than 25-thousand households, businesses, schools and religious institutions, have wracked up this amount in unpaid bills.

It has happened for a number of reasons. By far the biggest is leaky taps, pipes and cisterns. More than 20-thousand accounts suffered from plumbing leakages, with total losses of $6.3-million dollars.

So this is not only about forgiving debt. We are embarking on a public education campaign to get people to fix their faulty pipes so they don’t get big bills in the first place.

All told, this decision benefits about 100-thousand Fijians.

My Government is responding to an issue that we can all relate to. Many of these customers simply could not afford to pay their outstanding bills because they were so high. The arrears had built up over many years. Settling them was beyond their means. And we all know the distress that this causes so many ordinary families.

Well now they have one less thing to worry about. We are prepared to forgo this revenue to help them make ends meet.

Today, we are outlining what people need to do to take advantage of the amnesty period, which will run until the end of December.

You need to meet certain criteria, you need to apply for this to the Authority and your case needs to be properly assessed. You cannot just stop paying your bills.

It is a fresh start. But it is a once-off exercise. It is the duty of every household to have their plumbing fixed. And to try to pay their bills on time from now on.

Contrary to recent reports, there has been no increase in water rates for domestic users for 12 years. Another sign that we are delivering for ordinary families.

And now, here is the ad that will soon appear on your television screens with the details of what to do. It will be accompanied by ads in the press.

Vinaka vakalevu.