The prolonged water shedding in some suburbs by the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) owing to a pipe burst is frustrating residents who now have to go and queue by boreholes or scout for the precious liquid elsewhere.
While the city is currently on a 72-hour water shedding programme, on Monday the local authority said some suburbs would experience water shortages beyond the planned 72-hour water shedding programme owing to a “bad leak” near Hyde Park Cemetery in Pelandaba West.
CITE visited the affected some of the affected suburbs, Njube, Lobengula and Magwegwe – all fed from the Magwegwe Reservoir – and residents expressed their frustration over the development.
In Magwegwe North and West residents complained of the time they spend queueing for water at the borehole.
“In the morning the queue was that far as people had brought more than one water container, so we had to wait for hours in order to get our turn,” said one woman at a borehole situated at Magwegwe West business centre.
“The issue of water is a very serious one because without it there is just nothing you can do at home. That’s why we spend time here.”
Another woman at the same borehole who had come from neighbouring Magwegwe North lamented the absence of boreholes in the area.
“We don’t have any boreholes that side and that’s why you see us here as well,” she said.
“I don’t know how many times we have complained about water problems with no action being taken. We no longer want to say much about this because even if we speak out nothing happens.”
One man said there was a fight at the same borehole last night over the number of containers an individual is allowed to fill before giving others chances.
“Water situation is very bad here my brother,” said the man.
“Last night there was a bad fight here when people wanted water. There were those who had brought many containers in vehicles and wanted to fill them all before others could get the chance to do so and there was a terrible fight, I tell you.”
Due to overcrowding at the borehole, some residents now resort to going and asking for water from friends and relatives in the suburbs that would be having it.
In New Magwegwe and Lobengula West residents could be seen fetching water in an open well which they said comes from a pipe burst.
The pipe, residents said, is from Nyamandlovu Aquifer to Magwegwe Reservoir.
They, however, maintained that what is safe for drinking.