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Free water for Kries residents

2023-07-28  Loide Jason

Free water for Kries residents

Residents of Kries in the Hardap region are benefitting from free water, as the village council faces challenges with the implementation of a water billing system.

Kries is a remote area in the Hardap region, where its inhabitants rely mostly on selling wood and tobacco for survival.

The control administration officer at the village council, Edwin Swarts, informed New Era that the council is currently struggling and does not have the necessary billing system software in place. 

As a temporary measure, while the billing system is being developed, the council has decided to provide free water to residents during specified times in the morning and afternoon.

“For us to control the usage of water, we have decided to only open water in the morning and evening for residents to fetch water. It has been working while we are trying to get the system in place,” explained Swarts.

He reassured that the installation progress has reached 80% completion and will be finalised soon.

“The water tank placement submission is done; we are just waiting for implementation. We want to control water usage to avoid wastage and misuse, especially now that it is provided free of charge,” he added.

Franzina Boois, a 54-year-old resident of Kries, living in a formalised settlement of shack dwellers, expressed gratitude for the free water service. 

However, she voiced concerns about potential future costs once payment is required.

“We are happy that we have had free water for years now. But I hope it will not be expensive when we will pay for it in the future,” she said.

Patrick Klaazen (46), another resident who resides as a squatter, faces the challenge of walking long distances to fetch free water due to the lack of services in his area.

“I came here two years ago to hustle after resigning from my job at a farm. Life was hard, as there was more exploitation on the farm, so I decided to come here to sell wood. I grabbed land here, but there are no services. Water is free but very far,” he explained.

She now sells firewood for N$5 per bunch and tobacco for N$3 per bundle to buy food, as there are no employment opportunities in the area. -

2023-07-28  Loide Jason

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