Obrein Simasiku King Kauluma-King Kauluma community members left without clean drinking water after the only borehole at the settlement broke down a month ago, have received water from water tankers provided by the Directorate of Rural Water Supply. The situation was devastating to such an extent that villagers at King Kauluma Combined School had to cease the school feeding programme, which teachers said led to some learners having to miss school. About 500 learners were affected. Villagers had no choice but to consume saline water from another borehole, which is not fit for human consumption. Teachers were also forced to ferry water in containers which cost N$2 per 25 litres from Omutsegwonime, which is some 20 kilometres away, and had to share it with the learners. “The situation is now under control – we got two water tanks from Eenhana and NamWater. They ferried water to the school and the community as of today (Wednesday). They have a combined volume of 35 cubic metres, which can take us until next week before the water is finished,” said the head of rural water supply at Onankali, Stevenson Tuukondjele. “We are prioritising to fix boreholes which are in areas that are inaccessible by trucks, then by next week before the water is finished we will be able to address the issue at King Kauluma,” said Tuukondjele, pointing out that the King Kauluma borehole is problematic and gets repaired nearly every month. Tuukondjele said the cause was due to too many operators and mismanagement on the part of the community. “The borehole has too many offtakes, hence you find that when some people’s tanks are full, they close the valves while the engine is still running, which causes the engine to work anticlockwise,” he said, adding that he will soon hold a serious meeting with the community to sensitize them on the issue. “We cannot just be spending resources on the same thing over and over – the community should learn to be responsible and take care of this facility. Learn to report the issues on time. If nothing is done, report directly to me as head. From now onwards I will be closely monitoring these facility,” fumed Tuukondjele, while also sympathising with the affected learners. Meanwhile, Meriam Naiwala Andreas, a teacher at King Kauluma, described the situation as terrible. “The situation is really bad – it has become unhygienic as the toilets are not clean. We are forced to use the bush when nature calls. This however is not the case with some learners, especially the young ones, who normally risk using the dirty toilets which is a health hazard,” she said. Andreas added that learners end up missing some lessons because they sneak out to get water from the saline borehole as they cannot bear their thirst. “The learners’ teeth are turning brownish because of drinking the saline water. It is not safe at all, even for cooking, and the food turns yellowish,” she said.
New Era Reporter
2018-01-26 09:43:18 11 months ago