BY SILAS NKALA
BULAWAYO’s water woes got worse on Friday after thieves vandalised Zesa powerlines at Inyankuni Dam Booster Station, cutting off supplies to the water pump.
The city is currently on a six-day water-shedding schedule after three of its supply dams — Upper Ncema, Umzingwane, and Lower Ncema — were decommissioned while levels in the remaining dams have dwindled due to successive droughts in catchment areas.
Town clerk Christopher Dube said the theft would interrupt water supplies to all areas.
“The interruption is due to the theft of electricity cables that supply power to one of the city’s remaining three surface raw water sources Inyankuni Dam Booster Station. Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company is working towards ensuring that power is restored to the raw water source as soon as possible,” Dube said.
“The loss of pumping from Inyankuni Dam will lead to even lower water abstraction volumes, resulting in a daily loss of 18 megalitres per day to a system that is already struggling to meet current demand following the past two consecutive poor rainfall seasons.
“Water supply during the period will be determined through reservoir levels till power is restored to Inyankuni Dam.”
Due to acute water shortages facing the city, worsened by ageing water pipes, some residential areas such as Luveve 5, Old Luveve, Cowdray Park and Magwegwe have been getting contaminated water, blamed for the outbreak of typhoid and diarrhoea which claimed 13 lives over the past two months.