Ndonga Linena water woes continue

25 September 2019 | Local News

Ndonga Linena constituency councillor Petrus Kavhura says villagers are still drinking contaminated water despite numerous attempts by his office to solve the problem.

Earlier this year Namibian Sun reported that the community of Nyondo in Ndonga Linena Constituency have no option but to drink water from the Okavango River or shallow wells in the floodplain.

This water is not clean and puts them at risk of waterborne diseases.

Shallow wells are particularly prone to bacterial contamination.

At the time Kavhura said his office had submitted several requests for boreholes to the ministry of agriculture's water supply directorate, but nothing happened.

He explained that the funds budgeted for rural water supply had been allocated to the completion of the N$5.7 billion Neckartal Dam in the //Karas Region.

With the Neckartal Dam now completed, Ewi lyaNooli revisited the community of Nyondo and observed that nothing had changed for them.

When contacted for comment, Kavhura said the government's financial constraints had put the brakes on projects all over the country.

Kavhura said it was unclear when the problem would be addressed.

“There is no clear indication; we are only waiting for the 2019/2020 budget. If there is a borehole to be drilled then we expect it to be drilled in Ndonga Linena,” Kavhura said.

The councillor said the Turkish government had indicated that it was willing to fund the drilling of a borehole at Mangandu village.

“But that still needs to be finalised. The site has already been identified, it's just the issue of administrative work,” he said.

He added that they were also waiting for the awarding of a tender for the rehabilitation of the Sisijo village borehole.

The funds to rehabilitate the Sisijo borehole will come from the government's drought-relief account.

“As for Sisijo village, it will benefit from the drought-relief fund for water.

They will rehabilitate the current borehole; they have to install solar panels and tanks.

I understand the bidding was already done and we are just waiting for the awarding,” Kavhura said.

He was hopeful that the Kavango East regional council's 2019/2020 budget would allow for the drilling of a borehole at Ndonga Linena village, where cases of bilharzia are regularly reported.

Schistosomiasis, also known as bilharzia, is an infection caused by a parasitic worm that lives in fresh water in subtropical and tropical regions.

The parasite is most commonly found throughout Africa, but also lives in parts of South America, the Caribbean, the Middle East and Asia.

In his State of the Nation Address, President Hage Geingob said 95% of Namibian households had access to clean drinking water.

“Water is life and we are proud that access to potable water has increased from 50% to 95% of households countrywide during the period under review,” Geingob said.

“Community water points are built along pipelines. For those who need to walk to a water source, water is available within a radius of 2.5 kilometres.

In 1990, for example, residents of the Omusati Region walked approximately 10 kilometres to the nearest water source,” the president said.



KENYA KAMBOWE

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