By DESMOND CHINGARANDE
FINANCE and Economic Development minister Mthuli Ncube has released $37,4 million to the City of Harare in an effort to address the water challenges which has seen residents going for days without the precious liquid.
Ncube said part of the funds will be in foreign currency and will work towards improving water access and waste water treatment in the short-term.
“The City of Harare is facing a number of challenges which have resulted in failure to resolve the water and sanitation under-provision within the city. This has contributed to the decline in health status of residents,” he said.
Areas that are urgently targeted are water production, the rehabilitation of Morton Jaffray filters and purifiers which is expected to chew $800 000, replacements of water distribution pipes, and installation of 8 000 domestic household meters and that is expected to cost over $30 million.
The money will also be used for upgrading sewer systems in Glen View and Crowborough, which is viewed as a breeding typhoid and cholera hotspot.
Ncube said government is also developing a long-term solution for the water and sanitation challenges facing the capital by putting an implementation team comprising government, City of Harare and other experts.
The injection of the funds by the government will bring a sigh of relief for the MDC-led local authority since they have been blaming water shortages on lack of foreign currency to procure water treatments and repair ageing pipes.