On the Sunday 1pm Radio Botswana news bulletin, the Water Utilities Corporation (WUC) announced that they had successfully attended to leakage problems identified at Bonwapitse, and that pumping had resumed in the late morning of yesterday(Sunday).
There was panic around Gaborone when it was announced that pumping would be stopped at 1pm last week Friday, when the leakage at Bonwapitse was being attended to.
The announcement was that it could take two days barring the unforeseen. Some genuinely feared that the problems may actually go for a week or more dpending on the effectiveness of the team fixing the leak. The fact that within 48 hours the WUC announced restoration of water services, is indeed welcome.
However we are mindful of the fact that the fixing of the Bonwapitse leakage is no guarantee of free flowing water for the Gaborone and surrounding areas. Water rationing that has been hurting most of us, will continue until sufficient water sources to satisfy the populous greater Gaborone have been identified and harnessed. On this note we welcome the commissioning on Friday of the MASAMA wellfields by President Ian Khama, and hope that the commissioning was not just a rhetoric aimed at silencing the opposition the Umbrella for Democratic Change(UDC) who on the same day
The people of the greater Gaborone deserve to know the timelines for the deliverables in as far as the Masama wellfield project is concerned. We learn from President Khama’s elaborate speech that the Masama wellfield will pump 2o million cubic litres (mcl) of water per day and that in future they will be able to pump 25 mcl for the greater Gaborone region. President Khama also highlighted that his government has prioritised international outreach to secure our water entitlements from the Limpopo, Nata, and Zambezi river systems. We should harness the water resources from these sources as soon as possible. It was heartwarming to hear the President committing to maintaining and replacing piping in villages, as well as investing some P300 million to fasttrack the replacement of 26 km section of NSC 1.
The president also announced, among others, the construction of an additional pump station on NSC 1 to double its capacity to supply water to Greater Gaborone to 110mcll/day;