Water provision critical for improved livelihoods

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Grünau – Water minister Calle Schlettwein says not many citizens are aware of the efforts, skills and resources needed to bring the precious resource to them. Schlettwein was speaking recently at the inauguration of the Grünau rural water desalination plant.
 “What lies behind the tap is an amazing and complicated process that requires detailed planning, commitment and dedication,” he explained. The minister added it is for this very reason that Namibians should realise and appreciate the service they are receiving from NamWater. Schlettwein also said efforts to invest in water infrastructure to enable, especially the rural population to access clean potable water have been stepped up by government as many towns and villages have recently experienced steady economic growth. 

“This should not be the last time to invest into projects like this because our population whether in towns or in the villages will continue to grow and we have to continue improving the lives of our people,” said the minister. He also urged residents to do their part by paying their water bills timeously. Schlettwein urged all stakeholders involved in realising the project to put up more desalination plants in order to make the delivery of services to residents as smooth as possible.

 “I wish to urge residents and in particular all users of this plant, to look after it in order to ensure its longer life-span for the benefit of all,” Schlettwein concluded.  Speaking at the same event, Karasburg East constituency councillor Dennis Coetzee said access to clean drinking water is not only a basic need of mankind but a necessity to sustain all forms of life.  

He furthermore warned that, if the current water shortage and unequal distribution of it in some areas in the constituency is not addressed speedily, residents will face a catastrophic situation whereby diseases such as hepatitis E will break out in communities. 
The councillor then expressed his profound gratitude towards NamWater and the Adaptation Fund for listening to the pleas of residents by providing them with purified potable water. NamWater CEO Abraham Nehemia on his part explained the mandate of the entity as given by government as that of supplying water for both domestic and industrial purposes on a sustainable basis to ensure accelerated development and improved quality of life for all Namibians. 

“It is because of this very high-level commitment to ensure continuous water supply to the nation, that today we are witnessing a very important event where months of planning culminated into the realisation of yet another milestone in the history of water supply in Namibia,” he said. 
Martin Schneider, Executive Director of the Desert Research Foundation of Namibia (DRFN) in his speech at the event reasoned the involvement of all stakeholders is of utmost importance in projects like this and that he is furthermore confident and hopeful that the delivery of quality water will further improve the livelihood of all Namibians.

 The desalination plant is a first of its kind in Namibia using hybrid renewable and membrane technology to improve and treat poor quality groundwater.  The plant will have a raw water feed of 47.3m³ per day, which exceeds the current consumer demand of 36.0m³ per day. 
– sklukowski@nepc.com.na