Councils need $2.5bn resuscitate water, sewer infrastructure
ZIMBABWE’S 32 local authorities require a combined US$2.5 billion to provide clean water and sanitation services to their localities.
The deteriorating state of infrastructure in most localities has resulted in residents failing to access clean and portable water as well proper sanitation facilities.
This has resulted in the outbreak of water borne diseases such as Cholera and Typhoid which have claimed more than 50 lives this year.
Presenting on investment in Sustainable Urban Planning Development and Renewal at the 2018 local government investment conference organised by the Urban Council Association of Zimbabwe (UCAZ) in Bulawayo on Tuesday, Chitungwiza Municipality Town Clerk Dr George Makunde said local authorities were in dire need of funding.
He said the $2.46 billion was for a number of projects in the country’s 32 councils.
“The $2.46 billion is split into various s components service deliverable roles that we provide specifically for water supply, solid waste and waste water management for all 32 local authorities,” said Makunde.
“It takes on board dam construction, also looks at reticulation lines improvements and augmentation for pump stations.”
Dr Makunde added that each local authority had plans lined up to improve water services and provide clean safe water to respective localities.
“There is also a $5.6 million that is needed in terms of master planning and this is a submission from 19 local authorities minus 13 other local authorities. Possibly the 13 that did not submit their master planning did not submit their requirements or they are happy with their situation”.
The Chitungwiza Town Clerk said local authorities may be pushed to approach treasury to source funding for councils’ master planning.
“We may go full throttle in terms of the feasibility studies but I want to believe we take that avenue in terms of trying to source funding for that master planning issue,” Dr Makunde said.
Treasury usually channels funds directly to the Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe for any feasibility studies.
Also present at the UCAZ conference was an International Guest Speaker from the United Kingdom, Maurice Dillion, who is a specialist in developing master plans and economic development strategies.
As a prospective investor, Dillion also head Zimbabwe Capital Connect, which is based in the UK, said the $2.46 billion was a large amount and his company would be interested to research more on the type of investment needed by the councils.