Byo water crisis: Residents must monitor water use

The Monitoring, Consumption and Compliance Cluster of the Bulawayo City Council water crisis main committee has suggested various measures which can be employed to enable residents to monitor the manner in which they use water.

Making the cluster’s submissions during a water crisis main committee meeting, Thursday, Dr Chinyama said there are various initiatives which the council can make use of for residents to effectively conserve water at this moment when the situation is dire.

Dr Chinyama implored the council to come up with an effective call center or a mobile application platform which residents can use to report pipe bursts or other water-related faults.

“There are times when residents see burst pipes but there are no channels for reporting such faults instantly. Everyone now has access to their mobile phones so an application can be effective. Students from National University and Technology could be engaged to create this application,” she said.

“Residents also need to be capacitated on how to detect water faults at their houses or workspaces to ensure that water is not wasted. If there are devices which can be used to detect how much water would have been used a day, then they can be able to monitor their usage.”

Dr Chinyama also emphasized that there be measures put in place to monitor the source of water for bottling companies to ensure they do not package council water.

“There is a need to have an inventory and monitoring system to see where companies that make bottled water get the water they use from. If not monitored they may use water from the tap and just add a few more chemicals and make profits at the expense of the city council water. Residents with huge gardens also must be investigated to ensure they use borehole water for their plants,” she said.

Director of Engineering Services at the Bulawayo City Council Engineer Simela Dube explained in the same meeting that water consumption levels are constantly increasing while dam levels continue to decrease.

“Households in high-density suburbs are not supposed to exceed 400ltrs of water a day while those in low-density suburbs should not exceed 650ltrs for both main house and cottage combined but this is not the case,” he said.

“There are places such as Cowdray Park where they make use of standpipes. These are not protected and are prone to water abuse. They need to be closely monitored otherwise the council would be forced to remove them,” said Eng Dube.

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