HomeLocal NewsKunzvi Dam a myth?

Kunzvi Dam a myth?

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The much-touted Kunzvi Dam, regarded as the panacea to the Harare water crisis, is still bare ground where no soil has been moved to begin the project.

A visit to the proposed site of the giant dam by NewsDay recently showed other than the Nyagui River that flows through the area, there is no sign of any project taking place that part of Murehwa.

The Kunzvi Dam project was approved by the government in 1996 on the realisation Harare’s growth was outstripping its water demands.

Villagers who spoke to NewsDay said they had for years been expecting the project, but 15 years down the line, they had given up hope.

The Kunzvi Dam project was supposed to have taken off the ground 15 years ago and to be commissioned in 2002, but nothing has happened for one or the other of many reasons the government has proferred.

Villagers who, by now expected to have been benefiting from the dam expressed anger at the weekend as they travelled long distances to obtain the precious liquid from streams.

Water Resources minister Samuel Sipepa-Nkomo told NewsDay from Israel on Wednesday government was engaging the private sector to make sure the project kicked off next year.

“I think the project will start next year because we are talking to the private sector and I believe the funds are now secured. As minister, I am satisfied and I believe it should start next year,” said Sipepa Nkomo.

Robert Waruza, a villager said the signpost for the Kunzvi Dam had been there for years, but there is no activity.

“We started seeing the sign more than five years ago but up to now, there is no progress. We face water challenges here and the local authority is not providing adequate water, so we are also banking on that project.”

Recent reports had it that a group of private contractors secured $370 million (£231 million) needed to fund the project and a timeline would be given soon.

The water crisis in Harare has seen the rise in cases of water-borne diseases, including cholera and typhoid, which have been reported in Harare where authorities said infection figures had risen from 99 to 193 this week.

The proposed Kunzvi Dam is expected to provide 720 megalitres of water.

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