ALTHOUGH the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has officially suspended its crippling water shedding regime following some significant inflows into the city’s supply dams due to the recent heavy rains, it has warned residents to use the resource sparingly saying there would be periodical reviews to assess whether to re-impose rationing.
According to Council’s official statistics, the city’s supply dams are at a combined 60,94% full. The local authority’s Future Water Supplies and Water Action committee chairperson Gideon Mangena told a full council meeting on Wednesday evening that Mtshabezi Dam was now 100 % full and spilling.
“We have good news,” said Mangena. “As of Tuesday afternoon, Inzisa was 78,4 % full , Inyankuni (13,4%) and we don’t know why it’s like this. Lower Ncema (58,5%), Upper Ncema (43,7 %), Umzingwane (52,2%) and Mthsabezi (100 %) and spilling,” he said.
However, Mangena warned that although water shedding had been lifted, there would be periodic reviews on the city’s water situation and if residents wasted water, council would be forced to intervene and impose rationing.
Bulawayo introduced water rationing in 2010 due to insignificant inflows into its feeder dams, most of which are located in the low rainfall areas of Matabeleland South.
Initially, water shedding was 48 hours per week, but was later increased to 72 hours per week.
In January, the water shedding period was reduced from 48 hours per week to 24 hours per week until it was removed on Monday following the incessant heavy rains. Bulawayo’s average daily water consumption is about 100 000 cubic metres.