Gwayi-Shangani Dam 70% complete

Gwayi-Shangani Dam

THE construction of Gwayi-Shangani Dam, which will supply water to several centres in Matabeleland including Bulawayo, is now 70,2% complete, the Zimbabwe Independent heard this week.

The total cost of construction of the 650 million cubic metre dam is expected to be about US$121,7 million.

It is one of the flagship projects being spearheaded by government to transform the region into a green belt.

Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) spokesperson Marjorie Munyonga told the Independent that the project was close to completion.

"The Gwayi-Shangani Dam is at 70,2% completion,” Manyonga said.

“We do not have a set deadline at the moment but we are working with the mandates that we had from the beginning."

Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution in Matabeleland North, Richard Moyo added that the dam “is almost complete and will be ready to hold water by June.”

The dam, which forms the first phase of the National Matabeleland - Zambezi Water Project (NMZWP), will have a capacity to irrigate up to 10 000 hectares and support fish farming.

The second phase of NMZWP entails the construction of a 251km pipeline to take water from the dam to Bulawayo. 

The third and final stage will be the construction of a 122km pipeline from the Zambezi River to link the Gwayi-Shangani Pipeline.

The project suffered delays in 2019 and 2020 following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A recent report of the Portfolio Committee on Budget, Finance and Economic Development revealed that the project witnessed losses in the value of certified works due to changes in costs and local currency parity positions. 

“To provide fair compensation and lock in the value of work completed, it was suggested that all interim payment certificates (IPC) be processed in US dollars, with amounts converted to local currency  on the day of payment at agreed terms with the contractor and Government,” read a report presented in Parliament on March 9 2023.

“Furthermore, the committee was informed that fund disbursements from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development were lagging behind and that the project had not received any cement consignment from June 6 to June 30 2022,” it noted at the time.

According to the report, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) during the construction period garnished China International Water and Electrical Corporation accounts on June 13 2022, for the fourth time in the same year, citing tax compliance issues.

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