HomeNewsHarare borehole water unsafe for human consumption: Muchinguri

Harare borehole water unsafe for human consumption: Muchinguri


ALMOST all Harare boreholes are contaminated, with their water unsafe for human consumption, Environment, Water and Climate minister Oppah Muchinguri has said.


Oppah Muchinguri
Oppah Muchinguri

Speaking during the handover of $3, 5 million worth of water purification and sanitation equipment sourced by the African Development Bank in partnership with the Zimbabwe Multi-Donor Trust Fund (ZimFund), Muchinguri said pollution of water sources was contributing to climate change and putting millions of urban dwellers at risk of waterborne diseases.

“We know of the results which came out of the research on boreholes in Harare and showed that almost all of them are contaminated. This is a challenge to all our local authorities to ensure that our environment is clean,” Muchinguri said.

In the past years most local authorities have been battling to provide potable water to residents and this has seen outbreaks of waterborne disease such as cholera and typhoid.

As a result, most residents have resorted to the use of unsafe water sources among them, shallow wells and boreholes.

Muchinguri said the cost of purifying raw water had been a major driver why some municipalities were failing to provide potable water.

“We can’t continue allowing litter being thrown all over and we can’t allow garbage not to be collected, it’s costly. Local authorities are using huge amounts of money on chemicals to purify this contaminated water. They are using nine chemicals, it is unacceptable,” said Muchinguri said.

The equipment targeting sewer reticulation and water distribution management system will be given to Ruwa, Harare and Redcliff.

According to Africa Development Bank chief of mission Mary Monyau, the equipment is part of the $145 million sourced for the Zimbabwe emergency relief programme following the 2008-2009 cholera pandemic which killed over 4 000 people and affected many.

The multi-donor trust fund has partners from countries such as Sweden and Australia among others and is being co-managed by Zimbabwe’s permanent secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Willard Manungo, and Christina Landsberg, a representative of the donor community.

Besides water projects, ZimFund has also been active in energy projects as a way of alleviating poverty and hunger in communities.

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