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Council urged to adhere to water shedding plan

Bulawayo residents have urged the local authority to adhere to its proposed 144-hour weekly water shedding schedule to ensure that all areas receive water supplies.

The local authority reverted to the 144-hour water-shedding programme following an improvement in water levels at the city’s supply dams.

The water shedding programme is expected to be further relaxed to 72 hours, with the local authority anticipating to lift the water shedding by the end of March.

Speaking to CITE, Witness Tavarwisa from Matshobana suburb said the review of the water supply schedule was a welcome development.

“For those who were no longer receiving water at all, it might be a welcome development because they will be getting something, that is if the council abide by their promise, because the previous water shedding schedule that they have been sending, they would say some areas will receive water but you find that those areas won’t even receive the water,” said Tavarwisa. 

“ The challenge is that the schedule only becomes something on paper but practically it won’t be existing, so as residents, they have made us doubting Thomases. We will start appreciating them when those areas which were no longer receiving water in their taps start receiving water.”

Zhuaki Lunga from Makokoba said they want the water shedding lifted and normal water supplies restored.

Bulawayo United Residents’ Association (BURA) chairperson, Winos Dube said they will monitor the local authority to ensure that it adheres to the schedule.  

“This is a welcome move because if anything we are expecting to have water normally because after these rains really everybody’s expectation is to have water in each and every household,” said Dube. 

“We welcome the move and we are checking and monitoring it very closely to the adherence of the council to the schedule that is giving us as a people because we are so desperate as the residents of Bulawayo, we need water, we have suffered a lot,” he said.  

Bulawayo Water Action group (BUWA) secretary, Khumbulani Maphosa said there is a need to quickly fix the piping system because as long as it is not fixed, the City might go back to the water challenges. 

“The gradual progressive and easing of the water schedule timetable by BCC is something that is recommendable and it is something that we really appreciate as residents. However, the water piping system is not managed well, we are going to continuously lose a lot of water,” said Maphosa. 

“Secondly, the council needs stop providing fresh water to farms and to industry, as long as that continues we are also going to go back to the problem that we had. We appreciate the decisions but we are also calling them to be more vigilant in terms of conserving water especially in terms of water  availability to farms and industry , they should not be getting treated water because this water that has already spent a lot of money on and in some of them there is no necessity to be getting that water, that is already treated. 

“Also, the council need to be looking at how best do we duplicate the pipelines so that we get more water coming in from the Mtshabezi and those dams that have more capacity but are pumping little, those issues need to be looked at very fast so that at least we don’t revert back to the situation that we had.”

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