North East District Council Chairperson Florah Mpetsane is happy that there is a slight improvement of water supply in the North East District.
Briefing a full council meeting last week in Masunga village Mpetsane said that unlike in the past water supply in the district is adequately being met especially for areas that are supplied from Shashe Dam scheme and partially met for those areas that are supplied by Ntimbale Dam.
“Ntimbale dam which is the main source for the area stands at 85.2 percent while Shashe Dam which covers some of the villages stands at 82.3 percent. This therefore means that they can supply water continuously for a period of 15 and 21 months respectively without inflows,” she explained.
North East district has been plagued by water shortages over the years owing to poor water infrastructure. To try and address the crisis, government is currently upgrading the water infrastructure through the North East – Tutume Sub District Water Supply Scheme.
This project was financed by the World Bank at over P200 million and it entails among others; expansion and upgrading of Masingwaneng Water Treatment Works, construction of a pump stations and water reservoir at Kalakamati and Mbalambi villages respectively. There is also construction of storage tanks in Tutume, Maitengwe, Moroka, Ramokgwebana, Jackalas no 1, Jacklalas no 2 and Nshakazhogwe.
Upon completion the project will help ease the flow of water supply to 52 villages across these districts and 110 000 residents are expected to benefit. The project is expected to be complete by September 2021.
Mpetsane revealed that the western region of the district receives adequate supply while there is intermittent supply in the eastern region due to inadequate supply reaching the entire area. She however said no prolonged shortages were experienced during the previous months as most breakdowns were attended to within the shortest periods. She said that the only breakdowns that were experienced were due to vandalism of water infrastructure. She pleaded with members of the public to desist from tempering with the water infrastructure system.
“Though there is shortage in the western region there has been some noticeable improvement as some long dry areas were able to receive water during this period specifically in Jackalas 1. Rationing of water remains and it is augmented through bowsing. Five bowsers are dedicated to this area thus two from Water Utilities Corporation, two from council and one from CTO,” she said.
Mpetsane was also very optimistic saying that completion in upgrading and remedial works of North East and Tutume Sub District Water scheme project will bring about the much needed water supply improvement. She also expressed happiness over the progress of the project.
“Our Executive committee members toured the water scheme project on the 8th of September 2021 and were really impressed by the satisfactory progress on site,” she added.
Updating the district council on water distribution by Water Utilities Corporation, she said a significant number of breakdowns were received and attended to within reasonable time though some repetitive and corrective measures were put in place to reduce re-occurance. She however said the Corporation has backlog off over 200 new connections to be installed and every effort is made to reduce the backlog.