Gwanda water crisis worsens as supply source decreases

Gwanda water crisis worsens as supply source decreases

Gwanda town is facing a severe water crisis due to dwindling water levels at Mtshabezi Weir, its primary water source. The situation has been exacerbated by gold panners vandalizing the main pipe connecting the town to the weir.

In a notice to residents and stakeholders on 23 April 2024, Gwanda municipality town clerk Priscilla Nkala highlighted the challenges facing the town.

“We are struggling with reduced water levels at the weir, which has prevented us from resuming pumping. Our engineers are working hard to resolve the issue while we await additional water from the Blanket dam, which has affected our ability to pump water to our reservoir tanks,” said Nkala.

Gwanda mayor Thulani Moyo stated that the municipality is relying on the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) to alleviate the crisis.

“Zinwa is working to increase water levels by opening the new Blanket dam. However, the vandalism of the main pipe by gold panners has complicated the situation. We are attempting to sink the pipe deeper as a short-term measure while waiting for Zinwa to bring water from the Blanket Dam,” added Moyo.

Zinwa spokesperson Marjorie Munyonga confirmed receiving a distress call from the municipality and stated that Zinwa started releasing water from Blanket Dam on April 16.

“Normally, it takes 30 days for water from Blanket Dam to reach Gwanda. We are working closely with the council to provide technical advice on harnessing the limited water in the Mtshabezi Weir to mitigate the situation.”

Munyonga also revealed that the municipality owes Zinwa ZWL $818,821.72 in unpaid debt for water deliveries.

The water crisis has left residents and stakeholders concerned, and efforts are being made to find a lasting solution to the issue.

Makhosini Mpofu

Experienced Co-Founder with a demonstrated history of working in the automotive industry. Skilled in Marketing Management, Negotiation, Business Planning, Operations Management, and Analytical Skills. Also the Music & Entertainment Reporter with My Afrika Magazine.

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