Council introduces three-day water shedding
THE City of Bulawayo will embark on temporary water shedding which will see most suburbs in the Western areas going for three days per week without water as the council battles to normalise and manage water supplies at the Magwegwe Reservoir.
This is the second such programme after the council introduced water rationing to some suburbs at the beginning of the month. In a notice, town clerk Mr Christopher Dube said the affected areas are suburbs that are fed from Criterion and Magwegwe Reservoir.
“The City of Bulawayo would like to advise members of the public that there is an ongoing exercise to normalise Magwegwe Reservoir level. The level has been critical for the past three weeks, due to erratic pumping from Nyamandlovu Aquifer. Bulawayo City Council is working in conjunction with Zinwa to increase the borehole hours pumping to the City. In a bid to manage water supply from the reservoir, Council would like to advise that there will be an emergency interruption of water supplies to the following areas fed directly from Criterion and Magwegwe Reservoir and some surrounding areas,” he said.
Nkulumane, Nketa, Sizinda, Tshabalala, Bellevue, Newton West and West Somerton will experience water cuts on Monday from 8am and it will be restored Wednesdays at 6pm. It will be cut again on Friday at 8pm and restored the next day at 6 pm.
In Emganwini and Pumula, water will be cut on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8pm and back on Fridays and Sundays at 6pm. Mr Dube said in Cowdray Park, Emakhandeni, Gwabalanda and Maplanka water will be cut at 8pm on Mondays and Fridays and pumped at 6pm on Wednesdays and Saturday.
In Luveve, Magwegwe, Njube, Entumbane, Mpopoma, Lobengula, Mabuthweni, Iminyela, Pelandaba and Matshobane water will also be cut on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8pm and restored on Fridays and Sundays at 6pm. The town clerk said the programme is subject to change if the reservoir level improves or deteriorates beyond critical level.
“All the high areas that are likely to be affected for more than 48 hours will have water supplied by bowsers.
“Residents are urged to conserve water until further notice and Bulawayo City Council wishes to apologise to its valued customers for the inconvenience caused,” said Mr Dube.
Bulawayo has a history of introducing water shedding as the city faces water shortages either because of lower dam capacity or failure to pump adequate water. In 2012, the city made international news after it introduced the “Big Flush”, a synchronised toilet-flushing programme on weekends, aimed at unblocking the city’s sewer system after prolonged water restrictions. The city also introduced water shedding in 2016 after some of the supply dams were decommissioned due to reduced water levels.