THE people of Naruku settlement in Ba are relieved that clean water will be flowing from pipes in their homes in a few months.
The settlement of 50 households has been in dire need of a clean water supply, having had to rely largely on boreholes and streams.
A team from this newspaper visited the area to find Water Authority of Fiji officials working on pipes that would carry water directly to the 50 homes.
For 56-year-old Rahen Chand, the development represents a new and better life for him and his neighbours.
"I have been living here all my life and from the time I was born until now, we have been drawing water from rivers and boreholes," Mr Chand said.
"We struggle to get water every day."
He said many residents were relieved to learn that water mains would be installed near their homes.
"When the government came in and decided to set up a better water supply system, we were very happy.
"This is a big relief for us because now we won't have to depend on river water and drinking water that is not safe."
Ba advisory council chairman Viam Pillay said Naruku settlement was one of the few areas in Ba that had constantly faced water problems over the years.
"Because of these many problems, we had to help them with their self-help projects," Mr Pillay said.
"One such project was made possible with a government grant of $11,000. With that we were able to set up a temporary water supply system that allowed them to access water on certain days of the week."
Mr Pillay said while the new system worked, it was not enough to cater for the growing number of people living in the area.
"It's only temporary and it was good for them but they want a better water supply that goes straight to their homes.
"With this new work, the residents will be able to have clean drinking water in their homes."
WAF and the government have been installing water mains over the past months and when completed safe drinking water will be delivered to about 1000 people.