Times of Eswatini
Over 10 000 homes affected as
Not only is it that the area’s dam was damaged, but also a road that connects Matsetsa with Mpolonjeni was also destroyed on one side by the water from the dam which passes under it.
MATSETSA – While t he recent rainfall helped increase water levels in some dams, residents of Matsetsa were left in a worse state.
Matsetsa is an area under Lugongolweni Inkhundla in the Lubombo Region.
Recently, Eswatini experienced torrential rainfall, which also affected other African countries including some parts of South Africa, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The torrential rainfall caused flooding in some areas, rivers and dams also overflowed.
However, the same is also said to have caused a dam known as Ntsambo to burst at Matsetsa.
Last Monday, this publication visited the community around Ntsambo Dam.
The dam overflowed until one of the sections burst. This resulted in the water flowing out of the dam.
The dam has a drainage system that allowed the water to flow through during the flood. However, the drainage system collapsed, causing the water to flow under one of the roads.
Mbhekwa Maziya, who is the area’s bucopho, also expressed concern about the state of the dam. Maziya said he was shocked to see that not only was the dam damaged but also the road.
Maziya said the dam serviced about 10 000 homesteads. He said some of the residents used the dam for their livestock while others who lived nearby used the water for consumption.
“Not every person can afford to have portable water, so some fetch it from the dam,” said Maziya.
He said because the dam had now burst, it meant that some of the residents may struggle to
get water. He also said Ntsambo only source with ties. six reliable in Dam communi- an was water area the
ugh Maziya the dam said tho- still had some water, due to the damage, the level could drastically drop during the dry season.
Maziya said the dam and road damages were reported to the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, which both visited the area to assess the extent of the damage. He said he was hopeful that the responsible departments would be able to fix the damaged dam and also the road.
It is a double tragedy for the residents of Matsetsa.
This is because not only is it that the area’s dam was damaged, but also a road that connects Matsetsa with Mpolonjeni was also destroyed. One side of the road was destroyed as the water from the collapsed dam passed under it.
The bucopho said more than the collapsed dam, the main concern was the road.
He said for now, most motorists were no longer using the road. Maziya said the motorists were concerned that the road could collapse under them because it was weakened due to the water flowing beneath it.
Recently, the MaphiveniTshaneni Highway also collapsed and a large section of it was washed away. The road caved in as the water flowed through a culvert underneath it. The road is one of the many infrastructures that were highlighted by the National Disaster Management Agency ( NDMA).
Principal Secretary ( PS) in the Ministry of Public Works and Transport Thulani Mkhaliphi, speaking about the state of the roads in the country, not just the one at Matsetsa, said his department would embark on fixing the roads.
Mkhaliphi admitted that the state of the roads was not good, but said even before the torrential rains started his department was already preparing to fix the roads.
The PS gave an example that in some areas under Shiselweni, the fixing of the gravel roads had already started. He also gave an example about the road leading to Mkhondvo via KaPhunga, that it would also be fixed.
He said already, trucks to be used during the road works had been delivered at a depot near KaPhunga in readiness for the commencement of operations to fix the road leading to Mkhondvo.
This means that some of the residents may struggle to get water.