BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
THE Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has suspended the water-rationing programme introduced early this year, but urged residents to use water sparingly to avoid depleting the city’s reservoirs.
BCC introduced a 48-hour water-rationing programme in February before extending it to 72 hours as a result of low water levels at Criterion Water Works, the city’s largest water treatment plant.
The 72-hour regime was later scrapped as the situation improved and was again followed by a 48-hour schedule.
Then late last month, the local authority temporarily suspended the 48-hour water-rationing regime, promising to review it on August 9.
In a statement yesterday, town clerk Christopher Dube said: “The City of Bulawayo would like to advise consumers that the water-shedding (sic) programme
continues to be suspended until further notice. The city has been monitoring water consumption and service reservoir levels for the past weeks.
“The average water consumption level has been 143 megalitres (ml) per day against a target of 130ml per day with a maximum of 173ml per day and a minimum of
129ml per day over the period,” he said.
While water-rationing remains suspended, Dube said residents were encouraged to conserve water to avoid depleting water reservoirs.
A household in the western suburbs is expected to consume a maximum of 450 litres daily, low-density suburbs inclusive of cottages and workers cottages should
not exceed 650 litres per day, while residential flats with individual meters should not use more than 400 litres a day.
Failure to adhere to the approved water-rationing limits attracts a penalty of $2,50 per kilolitre.
The city’s supply dams did not receive adequate rainfall during the 2018/19 rainy season and BCC has since decommissioned Upper Ncema, with Umzingwane expected
to be decommissioned in November.