BULAWAYO, Saturday, November 23, 1991 — The people of Matabeleland must use good soil conservation methods to preserve dams in the drought-stricken province.
The call was made by the Minister of Energy and Water Resources and Development, Cde Hebert Ushewokunze, yesterday at the official opening of the $1,82 million Tshongokwe Dam and irrigation scheme in Jotsholo. Cde Ushewokunze urged people in the province to make beneficial use of water and added that he hoped that the 60 plotholders in the Tshongokwe area would fully utilise the water to irrigate their plots and get good harvests.
He said the main problem was that once a dam is built people never bothered to preserve it resulting in serious siltation.
“In realisation of the dire need to provide water to the people in the communal areas of the country, my Ministry intensified efforts in the development of dams in the communal areas to arrest and utilise the surface water run off.”
You will appreciate that my ministry is making tremendous effort with its limited staff and financial resources to provide water to the people in the communal lands and urban areas by constructing dams, sinking boreholes and providing piped water supplies”, said Cde Ushewokunze.
He added that he hoped that in future the Government would allocate his ministry more money to enable it to fulfil its goal of providing water to people in the communal lands.
During the tour of the 24-hectare irrigation scheme, Cde Mthokozisi Dlamini, an Agritex official working with the plotholders told the minister that each farmer had 0,4 hectares plot.
He said the plotholders had transport problems, which are hindering the delivery of their produce to markets in Bulawayo, Hwange, Dete and Kamativi.