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Water scarcity haunts Tutume Sub-District

LESEDI MKHUTSHWA
Villagers drawing water from tanks at Hubona PIC: KEOAGILE BONANG
FRANCISTOWN: In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, some villages under Tutume Sub-District are still facing acute water shortage making it difficult for hundreds of people to access clean water.

For an example, some inhabitants of the Tutume Sub-District do not have access to potable water as a protective measure against the coronavirus to wash hands frequently with soap.

In response to the current water crisis, Tutume Sub-District council chairperson Anthony Chebani said that solving the acute water shortage amid the COVID-19 pandemic is more urgent than ever. He also said with the water crisis at hand they are not sufficiently covered generally at their homes and in government institutions such as schools in fighting against the pandemic.

Chebani stated that for over a long period of time, they have been having serious water shortages in villages like Makuta, Tutume, Mafungo/Hubona, Matobo, Semitwe and Marapong.

He said: “Of course, I must admit that other villages in the district encounter water shortage problems but it is not so severe like the villages that I mentioned”.  He further explained that the problem of water scarcity is caused by some of the boreholes in Maitengwe, which are not functioning properly at the moment. He said that the outflow of water volume from working boreholes for irrigation purposes is regulated and very low which makes it harder for all the villages to be supplied with water at the same time.  Chebani also blamed some of the farmers for their unending problem because they

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have a tendency of vandalising water supply pipelines as a way of hustling for their cattle to drink water.

He said that the illegal acts by the villagers especially farmers become a drawback to Water Utilities Corporation’s (WUC) efforts to provide clean water to the people, as they will have to spend more time fixing the leakage water pipes.

He also indicated that wild animals like elephants destroy some of the boreholes and water tanks, which affects the water supply capabilities. Chebani indicated WUC workers are always on the run fixing the pipelines and other water structures so that people can have access to clean water.”  He further said that the government has come up with a permanent solution of upgrading the pump station at Ntimbale dam.

He further disclosed that government has already awarded a tender to a company to start reconditioning the pump station so that Ntimbale dam can be able to supply water to the affected villages.  He said that the project is about to commence as the company awarded the tender has already started constructing their offices at Kalakamati village, which is near Ntimbale dam.

In the meantime, Chebani said that Water Utilities Corporation together with the Botswana Defence Force use water bowsers on a regular basis to provide water to the affected villages.



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