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Gwayi-Shangani Dam now 66,2% complete

by Staff reporter
15 Jun 2022 at 07:28hrs | Views
Construction of the Gwayi-Shangani Dam is now at 66,2 percent completion and the process to have it gazetted as a lake is underway as Government intensifies infrastructure development in the country in line with National Development Strategy 1 (NDS1).

The rapid movement of construction work of Gwayi-Shangani Dam is part of the Second Republic led by President Mnangagwa's desire to fulfil the century-old dream to permanently solve Bulawayo's perennial water woes as well as transform lives in the Matabeleland region.

Addressing a post-Cabinet briefing yesterday, Acting Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Dr Jenfan Muswere, said Cabinet received an update report from Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development Minister, Dr Anxious Masuka, on the construction of the key dam.

"Cabinet wishes to inform the nation that construction of the Gwayi-Shangani Dam is now at 66,2 percent completion. The contractor is now working on the dam wall.

"The process of gazetting the Gwayi-Shangani Dam as a Lake is in progress. Excavations for the permanent access road commenced on 14 March 2022. The road will provide access to the mini-hydropower house," said Minister Muswere.

He said contracts for civil works for the pipeline were signed on April 7, and sites were handed over to 11 contractors.

"All the contractors are now on site, and 68km of the 252km of the pipeline route has been cleared, while 6km has been excavated. The 220 mega litres per day treatment plant at Cowdray Park is at the tendering stage, with bids having closed on 10 June 2022.

"About 800 megalitres of the treated water will be pumped directly to the 108ML Magwegwe clear water reservoir for onward distribution to the City of Bulawayo," said Minister Muswere.

Regarding hydro-power generation, Minister Muswere said the final design capacity of the plant was 10 megawatts.

The Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) and the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) will finalise the designs of the mini-hydropower plant and the subsequent electricity evacuation infrastructure by month-end, said Minister Muswere.

"The power generated will be fed into the national grid and assist in achieving self-sufficiency in power generation as well as rural industrialisation for the benefit of local communities."

On irrigation development, Minister Muswere said the Government had engaged chiefs in Lupane, Binga and Hwange.

He added that the communities have understood the thrust of the projects which have generated a lot of interest among them.

"Both communal and commercial irrigation blocks have been identified. The process of identifying irrigation pumping points is now complete. The 200-hactare per district under the Vision 2030 accelerator model is receiving urgent priority, and the irrigation for Bulawayo peri-urban areas was discussed," he said.

"The Ministry of National Housing and Social Amenities is working on model rural homesteads designs, and the proposed design drawings, complete with costs will be produced by 1 July 2022. The homesteads will have modern ablution facilities.

"Valuations for compensation of households around the dam that need to be relocated have been completed.

"The thrust is building formal and better houses with modern designs reflecting rural development as espoused in Vision 2030."

Minister Muswere said Cabinet directed that Gwayi Valley Primary school be allocated more land and funds to build more classrooms and teachers' houses, that there be greater involvement of the community and its leadership in planning for their community development and that focus on the feasibility of supplying schools along the pipeline with water for drinking and agricultural activities commences.

Cabinet further directed an acceleration of the project in line with Vison 2030.

Three months ago, Zinwa signed a US$50 million contract with Flowtite South Africa for the supply the glass fibre reinforced pipes needed for the pipeline.

Delivery of the pipes has already started.

Meanwhile, Minister Masuka reiterated that Zimbabwe has enough grain and millers were importing grain to fulfill their 40 percent quota.

Responding to inquiries from journalists, Minister Masuka said millers should not sit on their laurels hoping to get wheat from the Grain Marketing Board, but should embark on value-chain financing such as contract farming where they would buy their wheat requirements.

"Let me be more candid, no one should set up a bakery by the corner of a street thinking that GMB is a field where they will get the wheat. They must enter into value-chain financing," said Minister Masuka.

Source - The Herald
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