VILLAGERS of Tukavesi in Cakaudrove fear for their lives as they claim their drinking water has been contaminated as a result of the old piping system constructed in the area about 53 years ago.
In revealing the issue to Prime Minister Rear Admiral Voreqe Bainimarama at Vatuvonu last Thursday, villager Napolioni Rabale said despite assurances from authorities responsible, their system still had yet to be attended to.
He said as a result of the old system, villagers continued to encounter pipe bursts daily, prompting them to use plastics, clothes and other strapping materials to patch the rupture.
Mr Rabale said their septic tanks, most of which were made from big drums, had begun to give out bad stench as a result of the fill-up.
The villagers, he said, also feared sewage water seeping into their piping systems and contaminating their drinking water.
Speaking on behalf of 400 villagers, Mr Rabale said they had requested the Water Authority of Fiji to assist them in 2009 but the authority only renewed the system from the dam to the Tukavesi government station.
Mr Rabale said they only managed to collect $1000 from a fundraising drive last year instead of $10,000.
Rear Admiral Bainimarama said they would give the other $9000 this week and ordered the WAF to immediately upgrade the system.