CALUEQUE – The completion of the rehabilitation of Calueque dam in southern Angola is expected to ease the shortage of water experienced in the northern part of Namibia.
Speaking to New Era at Calueque on Monday, deputy permanent secretary in the Namibian Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry Abraham Nehemia said Namibia is expected to receive more water than usual after the installation of the three pipelines from the Angolan dam.
Currently, there are only two dilapidated silting pipelines which will soon be replaced with the newly installed pipelines.
Nehemia made the remarks shortly after the inauguration of the transboundary water supply project at Calueque in Angola.
The project is a joint venture between the two countries to rehabilitate the Calueque water supply system.
The rehabilitation saw the installation of a treatment plant, water off-take points and repairs of the canal between the Calueque dam up to the Angola-Namibia border.
The project is funded by the German Development Bank KFW.
In its attempts to solve water woes across the country, Nehemia said, the ministry is also planning to put up a well field to connect the Ohangwena aquifer to the existing water supply system.
Equally, Nehemia said the ministry has also given a notification of intent to extract water from the Okavango River to solve the water crisis in the north-central regions.
He said the extraction of water from the Okavango River is part of the river base plan between Angola, Namibia and Botswana.
“We are busy with the studies and once we are done, we are going to send the full document to them to see if we can go ahead with the plan or to inform us of the complications if there are any,” said Nehemia.
Speaking at the inauguration, Minister of Agriculture, Water and Forestry Alfeus !Naruseb said the project is vital for both Namibia and Angola as it improves community access to a reliable, affordable and sustainable water supply to meet the basic need for water.
Also speaking at the event, Angola’s Minister of Water and Energy in Namibia Joao Borges said the rehabilitated water supply system, which includes a treatment plant, has provided potable water to the residents along the Calueque. In addition to home connections, the system has also provided off-takes for communities for irrigation purposes.
The new system sees good riddance to the illegal connections from the canal which previously hindered the steady inflow of water to its intended destination.
Patricia Nekomba, who sources water from a community water point, expressed gratitude to the government for providing potable water.
“This is really good; we previously suffered from diarrhoea and other related diseases because of the water we previously consumed. This is a big relief,” said Nekomba.
The community previously sourced untreated water.
In addition to the inauguration of the water supply system, the two governments also signed a memorandum of understanding of transmitting interconnection of 400kV power line connections, which will connect the Angolan and Namibia electricity transmission networks.