$37 mil­lion boost for Bu­l­awayo wa­ter, sewer sys­tem rehabilitation

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page - Whins­ley Masara

BU­L­AWAYO City Coun­cil yes­ter­day re­ceived a $37 mil­lion boost from the African Devel­op­ment Bank (AfDB) to im­prove the lo­cal au­thor­ity’s wa­ter and sew­er­age ser­vices.

Work has al­ready started on the four year project and the AfDB has re­leased part of the funds.

Speak­ing at the of­fi­cial launch of the project yes­ter­day, Bu­l­awayo mayor Coun­cil­lor Martin Moyo said the project will re­sult in im­proved house­hold ac­cess to mu­nic­i­pal wa­ter and re­duced en­vi­ron­men­tal pol­lu­tion from raw sewage.

He said the project will re­sult in the up­grad­ing of wa­ter in­fra­struc­ture at Cri­te­rion and Mag­wegwe Reser­voirs as well as waste wa­ter in­fra­struc­ture in the catch­ment area.

“It’s my hope that at the end of this project, we would have achieved the key fac­tors which also in­clude the de­crease in non-rev­enue wa­ter, re­duc­tion in fre­quent burst pipes, re­duc­tion of en­vi­ron­men­tal pol­lu­tion and re­duc­tion of the sewer bursts,” he said.

The mayor said Bu­l­awayo was af­fected by many years of un­der-in­vest­ment in main­tain­ing its wa­ter and sewage in­fra­struc­ture due to eco­nomic chal­lenges.

“The city is also fur­ther af­fected by lim­ited wa­ter re­sources as a re­sult of drought and de­spite these fac­tors; the rev­enue col­lected by the lo­cal au­thor­ity is not 100 per­cent as the rest is lost through leaks and burst pipes.

“The project will as­sist the city in en­sur­ing that we mit­i­gate the chal­lenges of wa­ter and rev­enue lost through leaks as well and en­sure that the sewage gen­er­ated in the city is treated at the wa­ter treat­ment works,” said Clr Moyo.

He said the project is in line with Zim-As­set as it would im­pact on so­cial ser­vices and the lives of the peo­ple.

The Min­is­ter of State for Bu­l­awayo Provin­cial Af­fairs, Cde Eu­nice Nomthandazo Moyo said the funds be­ing poured into the project amount to one of the big­gest grants that have been chan­nelled to­wards wa­ter and san­i­ta­tion in­fra­struc­ture in Zim­babwe.

In a speech read on her be­half by her per­sonal as­sis­tant, Mrs Sichele­sile Ncube, Min­is­ter Moyo said the short­age of cap­i­tal and long term in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties in ur­ban ar­eas has been a ma­jor chal­lenge and Bu­l­awayo was not an ex­cep­tion.

“The city of Bu­l­awayo in its wa­ter and waste mas­ter plan, has pre­sented a need of $1 bil­lion to re­ha­bil­i­tate its in­fra­struc­ture and over­haul it to op­er­a­tional ca­pac­ity.

“It’s my hope that this con­tri­bu­tion of $37 mil­lion will go a long way to­wards the achieve­ment of goals and ob­jec­tives of the project,” she said.

“The project will ben­e­fit di­rectly 471 798 peo­ple of which 75 000 peo­ple who didn’t have ac­cess to these ba­sic ser­vices would ben­e­fit, while the whole city ben­e­fits from re­ha­bil­i­tated pub­lic la­trines, hy­giene ed­u­ca­tion and im­proved main­te­nance ca­pac­ity.”

The project’s task man­ager from the AfDB, Mr Esk­endir De­missie said the project would im­prove the lives of res­i­dents and con­trib­ute to­wards the re­vival of the lo­cal econ­omy.

“The bank’s pol­icy re­quires all of us to ob­serve the high­est stan­dard of ethics dur­ing the ex­e­cu­tion of the project,” he said.

“The sus­tain­abil­ity of the ser­vice largely de­pends on our abil­ity to em­ploy the best man­age­ment mod­els within our gov­er­nance con­text.

“This is a heavy re­spon­si­bil­ity en­trusted to BCC in bring­ing this project to fruition. This is a clear man­i­fes­ta­tion of trust by the cen­tral gov­ern­ment on Bu­l­awayo’s ca­pa­bil­ity and the bank’s con­fi­dence in the sys­tem in place.” — @win­nie_­masara.

Byo mayor, Clr Martin Moyo

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