MASVINGO City Council is set to double its water pumping capacity to 38 mega litres per day after securing a $52 million loan from China to ease water cuts that have seen some suburbs going for days without running water.
Speaking during a tour of the city’s water treatment plant last Friday, town engineer Tawanda Gozo said the pipeline project was set to start in December.
“We are carrying various initiatives to see to it that we give residents clean, safe portable water every time,” he said.
“We increased the water conveyance capacity from the dam (Lake Mutirikwi) and now we want to increase pumping capacity, which is at 50%.
“We are pumping 24 mega litres per day, though the actual demand is double. We secured a $52 million loan from China to upgrade our plant to increase pumping capacity. A Chinese company, China CAMCE Engineering, which helped us get the funding, is set to do the upgrade.
“We are tying the loose ends to regularise their work permits, among other things, and the project should start by December this year if all goes well.
“The water treatment plant was installed in 1960 and is now failing to satisfy the needs of the ballooning population.”
Town clerk Adolf Gusha dispelled reports that residents had been supplied with untreated water saying the city had enough stocks of treatment chemicals to enable council to supply residents with safe water certified by the Standards Association of Zimbabwe.
He said external laboratories conduct monthly tests on Masvingo’s water quality and have certified it as safe.
Masvingo last year went without water for long spells after levels at the city’s source, Lake Mutirikiwi, dropped significantly. The situation improved following a good rainy season.