The new pumps
…says councils must not rely on donors
GWERU - Government last week handed over the Amapongokwe Dam water project to Gweru City Council in a move which is expected to improve the water situation in the city.
The project saw the installation of four pumps which were procured by council with help from central government in response to a severe water crisis.
The Minister of State for Midlands Provincial Affairs, Larry Mavhima said the partnership between central government and the local authority led to the success of the project.
“What impresses me is the level of cooperation which was exhibited between government and Gweru City Council as the two parties came together harmoniously to achieve what we see today.
“The water issue came to our attention after residents knocked on our doors complaining of water shortages in the city. This was after water levels at Gwenhoro Dam reached alarmingly low levels. Let me commend the mayor and his councillors for the measures they took in dealing with issue up to date,” Mavhima said.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Local Governance, Public Works and National Housing, George Magosvongwe said the collaboration and corporation done was of importance to the Gweru community.
“US$651 000 was approved by treasury at the request of the Ministry for the Amapongokwe pumps. While government may come to assist on some and such initiatives, council must enable the generation of internal funds for the continuous improvement of water supplies.
“Residents must pay for the services given to them because nothing is for free. If this goes well, we expect residents to complement council efforts to improve delivery by paying their bills in time. We don’t expect a move where by local authorities depend on donors for service delivery,” Magosvongwe said.
Gweru deputy mayor Cleopas Shiri said the project’s successful execution will strengthen the city’s position as an investment destination.
“As council, we appreciate government intervention by way of giving us forex to purchase the pumps and this is a great day for us.
“The project will help us as a city to grow our GDP as people will come and invest in Gweru. No one wants to invest in a city with serious water shortages. We therefore appreciate that and hope that such relations will continue to subsist,” said Shiri.