Gweru City Council tells thirsty residents to be patient Gweru City Council

Johnsias Mutonhori, [email protected]

GWERU City Council, which is facing a serious crisis has urged residents to be patient as efforts are underway to address the perennial water challenges.

The local authority has since introduced a new water rationing regime which will see residents receiving water twice a week.

The local authority has been forced to categorise the city into 10 segments, with each zone expected to receive water at least two times a week after attributing the rationing to the severe water crisis that has hit the Midlands capital.

The council is relying on three pumps instead of six. Despite the installation of a new transformer, water supply remains a challenge with between 30 and 40 megalitres of water being pumped per day against the city’s daily water consumption of 80 megalitres

Responding to concerns raised during a recent full council meeting by Ward 1 Councillor Mercy Mangwanya regarding the prolonged water shortage in the city, Gweru City Council’s director of engineering Mr Masauso Store said they are making efforts to address the problem.

“We have areas such as Haben Park, which are facing water challenges. Those areas are not forgotten and it is a work in progress. Residents from those areas should be patient with us as we are working on modalities to address the issue,” he said.

“The exercise should be done in the next two to three months.”

Haben Park, Ridgemont Heights, Northgate Heights, and several other densely populated residential areas have been grappling with water shortages for months.

Despite mounting pressure from residents’ associations, Gweru City Council is failing to resolve the issue, attributing the challenges to low pumping capacity and frequent power cuts.

Eng Store said the council’s current focus is on improving pumping capacity through upgrades to the Gwenhoro water treatment plant.

The council has also applied for land to construct a solar farm at Gwenhoro, which would provide alternative power sources and help mitigate the impact of power cuts.

Eng Store said the council had temporarily set aside the full resuscitation of the White Waters treatment plant, which is currently operating at a deficit of three megalitres, to restore it to its maximum capacity of 4.8 megalitres per day.

Currently, the plant is only able to pump 1.8 megalitres per day. Eng Store said the current limitation at White Waters is the transformer and unavailability of sand filters.

“We want to restore it to its full capacity of 4,8 megalitres a day as we are currently pumping 1,8 megalitres a day,” he said.

Eng Store also expressed concern over the pilferage of water by plot holders along the line from White Waters.

“We discovered that there are several illegal connections along the line, which we connected. We will do another exercise as we realise that there could be more.”

The council has failed to improve the availability of water in the city despite the commissioning of a new transformer they have pinned their hopes on.

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