Pipeline replacement costs N$90 million … as infrastructure theft derails progress

Pipeline replacement costs N$90 million … as infrastructure theft derails progress

OMUTHIYA/ONDANGWA – The Namibia Water Corporation (NamWater) is spending N$91 million for the Ondangwa-Omutsegwonime pipeline replacement project phase one, which stretches about 17 kilometres from Ondangwa to Oshali.

It is expected to take 12 months to complete.

According to a press statement issued by NamWater’s head of public relations and corporate communications Lot Ndamanomhata on Friday, the
Ondangwa-Omutsegwonime bulk water supply scheme is a vital lifeline for the Oshana and Oshikoto regions.

“The scheme conveys potable water over 110 kilometres, and serves both urban centres and rural areas. However, the current infrastructure is struggling to meet the escalating demand, and is plagued by frequent pipe bursts and
supply interruptions,” he said.

He added that the design for the replacement pipeline has been meticulously crafted by their in-house civil team, showcasing the corporation’s competence and efficiency.

“The contract for the construction of the Ondangwa-Oshali section has been awarded to Homefin Properties CC, a reputable Namibian company, in partnership with Jiangxi International Element,” said Ndamanomhata.

Minister of Agriculture, Water, and Land Reform Carl-Hermann Gustav Schlettwein also pointed out that the
project is a response to the legitimate request from the community to improve water supply to them during the ground-breaking for the Ondangwa-Omutsegwonime
line on Friday.

“The demand for water has increased substantially as a result of increased population and economic growth activities within the regions, and the government is responsible for supplying affordable water to its citizens,” he said.

Infrastructure theft

Schlettwein continued that the ministry has lost significant amounts of money through the theft and vandalism of water infrastructure in the communities.

He said during the ground-breaking ceremony of the Ondangwa-Omutsegwonime pipeline project held at Ondangwa on Friday that the ministry lost about N$120 million in stolen water
pumps and solar panels in the last few

“Worst of all, the communities that
were served with clean, reliable water lost that existential service,” he said.

He added that all the drilling of boreholes, equipping and installing required infrastructure such power supply,
water tanks and pumps, and some
distribution lines were lost to the communities.

Schlettwein said the situation is intolerable, and called on the communities to look better after the infrastructure, while urging traditional authorities, regional authorities  and local authorities to join hands in preventing these crimes.

“We must also cooperate to, if such a crime happens, bring the culprits to book,” he added.

Phase 1 of the Ondangwa-Omutsegwonime pipeline replacement project covers the section from Ondangwa to Oshali.

“The Ondangwa-Omutsegwonime bulk water supply scheme, also known as the South East (SE) scheme, has been a cornerstone in providing essential water resources to the Oshana and Oshikoto regions,” he said.

He added that spanning approximately 110 kilometres, this scheme conveys potable water from Ondangwa, traversing through Omuthiya, and culminating in the Omutsegwonime village.

Moreover, the scheme does not only
serve the urban centres, but extends to
various branch lines such as Onethindi-Onandjokwe, Onathinge-Onayena, Okatope-Okankolo, Okatope-Omuntele, and several bulk  feeder lines of the Directorate of Rural Water Supply.

In addition to the primary pump
station at Ondangwa, Schlettwein said several booster pump stations located at Oshali, Okatope and Omuthiya ensure
the effective distribution of water across this extensive network in the two