Pollution doubles water treatment costs


HARARE City Council has doubled its expenditure on water treatment chemicals as most of the city’s water sources have been heavily contaminated, town clerk Tendai Mahachi has revealed.


“Both local authorities (Chitungwiza and Norton) are polluting including Harare.

“It is pollution of raw water and that is why we use more chemicals to clean,” Mahachi told NewsDay on Friday.

“We use between $1 million and $1,5 million under normal circumstances, but under this situation where there is too much pollution of raw water, we use about $3 million a month on chemicals,” he said.

Mahachi said Harare supplies treated water to Norton, Chitungwiza, Ruwa and Epworth, but was owed over $4 million by the satellite towns.

He said council would continue to engage the towns over the debts, but would not disconnect water supplies as that could spell a major health disaster to the communities.

“We are owed more than $4 million, but we are talking as local authorities.

“What we will not do is to disconnect them because they want to have alternative sources and we can’t put people’s lives at risk to diseases,” he said.

“We need to agree with them. The highest debtor is Chitungwiza followed by Norton, then a bit of Epworth. Ruwa is up to date, they pay.”

Harare is also owed more than $300 million by the government, business community and residents.