Kudzaishe Muhamba Herald Reporter
Harare residents should brace for another dry weekend as council is shutting down its main water treatment plant, Morton Jaffray Water Works to allow for rehabilitation works.
In a statement, Harare Water acting director Engineer Zivai Musikavanhu said the plant would be completely shut down as of yesterday 4pm up to 2pm tomorrow to allow for the contractor to work on the rehabilitation of Warren Control Pump Station.
“The shutdown is primarily being carried out to allow our contractor, who is working on the project for the rehabilitation of Warren Control Pump Station, to repair the DN1400 reservoir feeder pipe, which is badly corroded at the chlorine dosing point before entry to the fresh water reservoirs, plus installation of DN1500 and 1000 tim butterfly reservoir valves at Warren Control, installing new suction and discharge valves on pump 6, 11 and 13 to enable their eventual uninstallation and replacement,” he said
Eng Musikavanhu said the works were expected to increase the number of pumps installed at Warren Control Station.
The control station directly supplies most of the water to the western and south-western suburbs where the majority of Harare residents live.
Residents in the eastern and northern suburbs tend to get very intermittent supplies, with one day a week being the maximum, but a swathe in the north-east or on higher ground in these areas get nothing, ever.
“The department will also be taking advantage of this emergency critical shutdown to undertake repair work on trunk mains to reduce physical water losses currently obtained in the system,” said Eng Musikavanhu.
Harare residents said the rehabilitation of the pumps at the Morton Jaffray is a welcome development.
Zimbabwe National Organisation of Associations and Residents Trust (ZNOART) national chairman Mr Shavar Chikomba said they appreciated the council’s efforts in trying to end water challenges in Harare.
“Sadly, they have been refurbishing these pumps time and again and nothing changes, after they put these new pumps. We just put our hope to the council, maybe this is another chapter of the services they provide, we just wait for the results,” he said.
Combined Harare Residents Association programmes manager Mr Rueben Akili said the upgrading of the water reticulation was a welcome move as it ultimately contributed towards improvement of water supply both in quality and quantity.
“We expect the local authority to do durable repairs to the water infrastructure to avoid water supply disruptions,” he said. “The whole water reticulation requires attention to enable the city to provide water to the large population of the city.”