Local Authority

BCC requires US$15m to meet water needs


BULAWAYO-The Chairperson of the National Action Committee on Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene, Anxious Masuka, has said that the City of Bulawayo requires US$15,299,751 to meet its daily water needs of 155 megalitres.

Masuka who is also the agriculture minister, added that the cabinet has resolved to prioritize water supply throughout the country.

The minister said this during Tuesday’s cabinet meeting, where he reported that the City of Kings currently pumps an average of 91.4 megalitres of water per day, falling short of the required production capacity of 155 megalitres.

He also disclosed that the combined storage capacity of the dams supplying the city was at 40.09% as of April 4, 2024.

Furthermore, Masuka revealed that the government has drilled a total of 79 boreholes and allocated a financial contribution of US$1.2 million to improve the water supply in Bulawayo.

He stated that “Nyamandhlovu Aquifer is contributing 13,85 megalitres per day against the optimal capacity of 16,38 megalitres per day”.

Meanwhile, Minister Masuka warned that the country would face water shortages due to the depressed 2023/24 rainfall season, attributed to the El Niño weather phenomenon.

Adding that “as at 4 April, 2024, the national dams were at 79.9% full which is substantially above the 71.7% expected during the month of April”.

Masuka provided updates on dam projects, stating that 12 construction projects were underway.

“Lake Gwayi-Shangani in Matebeleland North is currently 70.2% complete, while Kunzvi Dam in Mashonaland East is at 47% completion,” added Masuka.

He  emphasized that Lake Gwayi-Shangani dam would receive priority during the 2024 project cycle.

Regarding urban water supply, Masuka reported that 48.9% of the 47 urban centers have a raw water supply that can last for at least 21 months, while 38.3% fall into the moderate category with a supply ranging between 12 and 20.9 months.

He further noted that 12.8% of the centers have less than 12 months’ worth of raw water supply.

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