Bulawayo, April 15, 2013 – The Department of International Development (DFID) in joint efforts with World Vision has donated $5,5 m for emergency water provision in the second major city of Bulawayo which faces a perennial water shortage.
Head of the DFID in Zimbabwe, Jane Rintoul, said the UK is providing the assistance over the next 12 months to increase the water sanitation services in Bulawayo.
“We intend to support the most vulnerable, urban communities in response to recent water shortages. We expect 140 000 people to benefit directly from the services and the rest of the city to benefit indirectly,” said Rintoul.
The programme will also deliver improved levels of school sanitation, through construction and repair of facilities in 73 schools where 80 elevated 10 000 litre tanks will be constructed.
DFID has plans to provide clean water and sanitation to over three million people in Zimbabwe by 2015.
“I do not remember any other city that has suffered such a crisis,” Dr Samuel Sipepa Nkomo said this while launching the Bulawayo Emergency Water Supply Augmentation Project at the Bulawayo City Council Offices last week.
“You have suffered but managed well. It is commendable that you stuck to your principles to ensure equitable supply of water to all residents,” Dr Nkomo said.
Nkomo has called for a water summit, which will be held during the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair on April 22, in which water experts around the country will discuss a lasting solution to Zimbabwe’s water woes particularly in arid regions such as Matabeleland and Masvingo.