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Pipeline repairs to leave Bulawayo dry

by Staff reporter
03 Apr 2019 at 08:49hrs | Views
BULAWAYO City Council (BCC) will today carry out major repair works along the Umzingwane/Mtshabezi pipeline — in an unavoidable move which will leave the whole city dry for 15 hours.

This is because the works being carried out require a complete shutdown of all the pumps drawing water from Umzingwane Dam.
In a notice yesterday, BCC advised residents that it would carry out the repairs on the pipeline between 07:00 hours and 22:00 hours today.

"These repairs will result in the shutdown of pumping from Umzingwane Dam and will affect the amount of raw water being delivered to Criterion Waterworks.

"This will resultantly affect the volumes of raw water available for treatment," it said.

The repairs come as the city has instituted a 72-hour water-rationing programme to allow the sharing of the scarce vital commodity by all residents.

Zimbabwe is currently reeling from a severe drought which has left at least 5,2 million people needing food aid in the worst hit areas such as Masvingo and Matabeleland.

Last month, Bulawayo city residents warned that they were are at grave risk of contracting deadly diseases such as cholera and typhoid, unless the government urgently bailed out their city council to replace its decrepit sewer and water infrastructure.

This came as virtually all local authorities in the country are grappling with similarly antiquated sewer and water reticulation equipment, which requires hundreds of millions of dollars to replace it.

Bulawayo Progressive Residents' Association (Bupra) co-ordinator, Emmanuel Ndlovu, said that BCC had been crippled by acute shortages of foreign currency to service its infrastructure — which meant that it required urgent help from the national government.

"Central government should come in to rescue … what is happening now is just a symptom of the worst that is yet to come in the near future, unless something is done urgently.

"While we accept that the council is trying its best in light of the prevailing foreign currency shortages, serious challenges have been noted in the areas of refuse collection and burst sewer pipes.

"It has been noted that the infrastructure is dilapidated, and there is need to totally remove the old piping and replace it with new infrastructure.

"The council budget … has no allocation for investment in infrastructure … all that we see is maintenance works, repairing and re-painting," Ndlovu told the Daily News then.

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Source - Daily News