Zinwa, Banket residents on water woes


Residents of Banket town's two new suburbs, Kuwadzana Phase Two and Banket Infill, who rely on boreholes and wells, will have to fork out at least $400 to have running water connected to their homes by the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa).

The revelation was made by Zinwa Manyame catchment area manager, Engineer Justice Mapanzure during a recent stakeholders' meeting to discuss water supply issues in the area.

Mapanzure said whilst it wass the duty of government to fund public services such as water reticulation systems, the administration had failed due to the harsh economic environment prevailing in the country.

 Mapanzure said most of the capital projects on water augmentation undertaken by Zinwa were donor-funded.

"The central government is financially hamstrung and it will take a long time for it to be in a position to carry out its mandate. If we continue to sit on our laurels and hope for government to come in, this would only stall infrastructural development," said Mapanzure.

Desperate homeseekers in Kuwadzana Phase Two and Banket Infill moved to their allocated stands before the area was fully serviced by the developer.

The area, with more than 1500 stands, has no water supply as there is no water reticulation system in place with Zinwa intending to construct a dedicated water line for the suburbs through residents' contributions.

Mapanzure said the new suburbs could not be connected to the already burdened water reticulation system that supplies Kuwadzana township which has old pipes that are regularly bursting. He emphasised a dedicated water supply line from the main water reservoirs was required to ensure a consistent water supply to the two new suburbs.

A dedicated water account for the project where residents would deposit their contributions has since been opened. Mapanzure implored residents to fully support the project whose completion has been set for December this year.

He said Zinwa had engaged a local pipe manufacturer, ProPlastics who have already supplied them some pipes to kick-start the project.

The materials, the engineer said, only cover at least a quarter of the project which will be implemented starting with Banket Infill stands.

Some residents raised concern over the $400 being demanded, alleging it was extortionate.   

Residents also demanded assurances their hard-earned cash would not be siphoned by unscrupulous Zinwa officials. Mapanzure reiterated a resident committee to check progress and monitor funds would be set-up.

Pastor Tinashe Chakadoka called for residents to be progressive and be united in coming up with solutions for their community.

Zinwa administers water supply to the small farming town of Banket, situated 95kilometres northwest of Harare along the Chirundu highway.

Perennial water problems have dogged the town owing to aged infrastructure which was reportedly installed in 1974.

Meanwhile, Banket Town Board has started the process to rehabilitate the sewer reticulation system in the town after inviting tenders for the construction of new sewerage holding ponds. A site visit by interested bidders was done recently, a pointer work to end perennial sewer pipe bursts and blockages would start soon. 

The rehabilitation project, whose cost has been kept under wraps, would be facilitated by Zvimba Rural District Council.TOP NEWS

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