BY FARAI MATIASHE/XOLISANI NCUBE
The Harare City Council is planning to drill more boreholes to improve water supplies in the capital’s residential areas as the water situation continues to deteriorate.
Council has been failing to adequately supply water to residents, citing a number of issues such as burst pipes, shortages of treatment chemicals and water pumping equipment that have
resulted in most parts of Harare going for five days a week without water.
A full council meeting on Tuesday agreed to repair all the non-functioning boreholes to supplement water supplies.
The city’s acting director of water was tasked to identify boreholes which could be feed into water tanks and repair them.
The meeting also resolved to recommend that the on-going water crises be declared a national disaster to speed up procurement of chemicals.
The acting director of water, Phakamile Mabhena Moyo said while boreholes were the last option available, his department would ensure that at least every household in Harare could receive tap water once a week.
“It is resolved to recommend that the council declares the water situation a state of emergency to enable the procurement of chemical, on an emergency basis in terms of the Public
Procurement and disposal of Public Assets Act (Chapter 22.23),” the minutes read.
Moyo recommended that stock levels for all chemicals be significantly improved for steady production levels to be sustained.
A survey conducted by NewsDay in Harare yesterday showed that some residential areas including Kambuzuma, Budiriro, Glen View and Mbare were going close to a week without municipal
water and residents had resorted to boreholes, unsafe wells and streams for water.
“We normally get water supplies from Tuesday to Friday, but this week we are likely to spend the whole week without water. It is already Tuesday and our taps are dry,” Lyn Chando, a Kambuzuma resident said.
She said they were using boreholes in her area, but some were going to nearby wetlands to fetch water from wells because only a few boreholes were servicing the whole community.
Patience Chari from Mbare told Newsday that Matapi Flats which are usually spared, have not had water supplies since Sunday.
“Some flats here usually get water during the night and for us we could go for weeks with water supplies, but it seems the situation is deteriorating as we had no water since the beginning of the week. The situation is dire considering some boreholes are not working,” she said.