Wa­ter agree­ment: All you need to know

The Herald (Zimbabwe) - - Zinwa/stocks -

What is a wa­ter ab­strac­tion agree­ment?

A WA­TER ab­strac­tion agree­ment is a con­tract that any per­son, en­tity or or­gan­i­sa­tion who needs a reser­va­tion for their use of raw wa­ter from Zinwa man­aged or State dams en­ters into with Zinwa for the pro­vi­sion of his or her wa­ter re­quire­ments.

Why is an agree­ment re­quired?

Wa­ter ab­strac­tion agree­ments al­low Zinwa to ef­fec­tively plan the al­lo­ca­tion of lim­ited wa­ter re­sources avail­able in its stor­age reser­voirs to meet the com­pet­ing needs of wa­ter users.

The agree­ment forms the con­tract which spells the obli­ga­tions of Zinwa in sup­ply­ing the raw wa­ter and that of the wa­ter user who pays for the ser­vices ren­dered.

Who needs to get a wa­ter ab­strac­tion agree­ment?

In terms of the Wa­ter Act, any­one us­ing raw wa­ter for pur­poses other than pri­mary pur­poses should have a wa­ter ab­strac­tion agree­ment. In ad­di­tion Statu­tory In­stru­ment 206 of 2001 com­pels ev­ery­one us­ing raw wa­ter from Zinwa man­aged dams to have an agree­ment when it says;

“No sur­face wa­ter per­mit shall be re­quired of a per­son who wishes to ab­stract sur­face wa­ter from a wa­ter stor­age works or share of a wa­ter stor­age works vested in the State or the Na­tional Wa­ter Au­thor­ity for any pur­pose men­tioned in para­graph (a), but such per­son must en­ter into an ab­strac­tion agree­ment with the Na­tional Wa­ter Au­thor­ity in terms of sub­sec­tion (6) of sec­tion 39 of the Act

How does one get an agree­ment?

Any per­son wish­ing to use wa­ter from Zinwa man­aged or State dams should ap­proach the re­spec­tive Zinwa Catch­ment of­fice from which they would want to ab­stract wa­ter and lodge an ap­pli­ca­tion for wa­ter stat­ing the in­tended use of the wa­ter, their phys­i­cal ad­dress, the amount of wa­ter re­quired, point of ab­strac­tion and crop in­tended for ir­ri­gation in the case of farm­ers. If Zinwa, af­ter con­sid­er­ing the ap­pli­ca­tion is sat­is­fied that there is enough wa­ter in their dams to meet the ap­pli­cant’s needs, the two par­ties will then en­ter into a wa­ter ab­strac­tion agree­ment.

How does the agree­ment sys­tem work?

Once a wa­ter ab­strac­tion agree­ment is en­tered into, Zinwa will re­serve the full al­lo­ca­tion as re­quested by the user in its dams and re­leases the wa­ter as per the wa­ter user’s wa­ter or­ders from time to time un­til the full al­lo­ca­tion is ex­hausted. The agree­ment holder be­comes ex­clu­sively en­ti­tled to the al­lo­ca­tion spec­i­fied in the agree­ment which they are as­sured to get and the wa­ter can­not be re­leased to any other wa­ter user.

The user is also ex­pected to in­stall, at his own cost, a me­ter or any other ac­cept­able mea­sur­ing de­vice to mea­sure his con­sump­tion and ad­her­ence to his al­lo­ca­tion.

How is agree­ment wa­ter billed?

Agree­ment hold­ers are ex­pected to pay for their wa­ter al­lo­ca­tion in monthly in­stal­ments dur­ing the sub­sis­tence of the agree­ment. How­ever in the case of farm­ers and other users who get their money at the end of a par­tic­u­lar sea­son or pro­duc­tion process Stop Or­der ar­range­ments can be made so that the bills can be set­tled dur­ing that pe­riod. Wa­ter users may choose to pay the full sum of their al­lo­ca­tion at the on­set of the agree­ment es­pe­cially where smaller vol­umes of wa­ter are con­cerned.

Why should wa­ter users pay for this wa­ter?

The money paid by wa­ter users is used for the op­er­a­tion and main­te­nance of dams and re­lated wa­ter in­fra­struc­ture that en­able users to have ac­cess to the wa­ter re­sources given that the coun­try has dis­tinct wet and dry sea­sons and as such most of dry sea­son river flows are as a re­sult of dam re­leases.

What hap­pens if one uses wa­ter with­out an agree­ment?

A per­son who uses wa­ter with­out the nec­es­sary au­tho­ri­sa­tion doc­u­men­ta­tion com­mits an of­fence in terms of Sec­tion 118 of the Wa­ter Act and is li­able to a fine, im­pris­on­ment or both. The same ap­plies to any­one who uses more wa­ter than he is en­ti­tled.

◆ For more in­for­ma­tion you can con­tact the Zinwa Cor­po­rate Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and Mar­ket­ing Depart­ment on call­cen­tre@zinwa.co.zw or pr@zinwa.co.zw You can also visit the www.zinwa.co.zw or al­ter­na­tively fol­low us on Twit­ter @zin­wawa­ter

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