The Chron­i­cle

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News -

BULAWAYO, Monday, Novem­ber 25, 1991 — The wa­ter short­age af­fect­ing an­i­mals in the Hwange National Park is due to the large num­ber of bro­ken down wa­ter pump en­gines, a se­nior of­fi­cial in the De­part­ment of National Parks and Wildlife Man­age­ment has said.

Con­tacted for com­ment on the wa­ter short­age, the of­fi­cial, who spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity, said a con­sid­er­able num­ber of en­gines used to pump wa­ter were not work­ing as a result of short­ages of spares.

“Hwange has 65 bore­holes, but a size­able num­ber are not work­ing at the mo­ment be­cause there are no spare parts. Most of the en­gines are very old so they break down con­stantly. Get­ting spares is very dif­fi­cult,” he said.

He said the prob­lem was com­pounded by the fact that hun­dreds of ele­phants were stream­ing into the park from neigh­bour­ing Botswana.

The en­gines that were still op­er­at­ing could not pump enough wa­ter to meet in­creased de­mand. The pro­longed drought was also a con­tribut­ing fac­tor be­cause most drink­ing pans had dried up, he said.

The Hwange area has very few rivers to pro­vide drink­ing wa­ter for an­i­mals so they de­pend largely on bore­hole wa­ter and drink­ing pans.

Farm­ers in the Hwange area early this week ex­pressed con­cern at the wa­ter sit­u­a­tion in the park. They said un­less enough rains fell soon, many an­i­mals would die.

How­ever, the of­fi­cial in the De­part­ment of National Parks and Wildlife Man­age­ment said there was noth­ing his de­part­ment could do as it did not re­ceive enough money from cen­tral gov­ern­ment.

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