• July 11th, 2020

Oshikoto residents buying N$50 water from privileged farmers

OMUTHIYA – Some residents in Oshikoto are paying up to N$50 for a 25-litre container of water from privileged farmers who have tanks in the area, as the drought continues to ravage communities here.
This is considered an unreasonable price compared to the N$15.50 per cubic charged by the government’s Rural and Water Supply Department. 

The head of Rural and Water Supply in Oshikoto, Stevenson Tuukondjele, condemned such acts, describing them as pure daylight robbery of the already impoverished citizens. 

“How can you charge N$50 for a 25-litre container of water, yet a cubic costs N$15.50? That’s absurd, charging them five times than what you receive. What is 25 litres into a cubic to cost that much? People should learn to be considerate of others and stop being selfish,” stressed Tuukondjole, urging people to be patriotic.

He said this following a review meeting on community-based management guidelines of rural water supply held in Omuthiya with various stakeholders. 

“The meeting was to review the guidelines on how to regulate the functions of water supply, strategies and subsidy policy for less privileged members who cannot afford to pay their water bills. Therefore it seeks to identify how such people can be assisted as well determine if the current guidelines are effective or not,” he said.

The first policy guidelines were formulated in 1997. At the meeting, the community highlighted that they are faced with low water pressure as well as water scarcity while in some areas it is saline, thus not fit for human consumption. 

With this, Tuukondjele said, the directorate is in the process of seeking assistance from Namwater with water tanker trucks in order to distribute to various areas, as the directorate’s fleet is inoperative due to breakdowns. 

“The situation is severe, you can’t believe that there are such people suffering in our country. It’s so dire that even boreholes are dry to such an extent that they pump sand. As short-term means we will be supplying water through tankers to specific points in various areas. Our trucks will also soon begin being repaired,” said Tuukondjele.

With regard to low pressure, he explained that at some points Namwater does not pump water to full capacity because some pipes are old, hence filling them to maximum will lead to damage. 
But he said it was better to have little than nothing, adding that repairing them is not an option for now due to predicaments.

In addition, he said the low pressure was caused by some individuals or farmers having tankers with a carrying capacity of 10 cubic metres, which delays the flow of water to other end users. 
The most affected areas, he said, are in Nehale Lya  Mpingana, Okankolo and Eengodi.

Obrien Simasiku
2019-08-29 07:23:06 | 10 months ago

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