GWERU City Council requires $7 million to renovate two sewage treatment plants to prevent the discharge of partially treated effluent.
The council’s acting director of engineering services, Praymore Mhlanga, said the local authority had applied to the government and was granted permission to borrow money to refurbish the plants.
Over the years, council has been at loggerheads with the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) over the discharge of raw sewage into the environment.
At one time, council had to pay a $5 000 fine to EMA for discharging effluent into the Gweru River.
“We have assessed our sewage treatment plants and $7 million is required to repair the two plants,” Mhlanga said.
“The Local Government ministry has given us permission to borrow the money from the markets and we are undergoing the process to do so (borrow).”
He, however, said not all the partially treated effluent was discharged into the environment saying council used the water for irrigation purposes on its farms.
“Despite the unfortunate situation we find ourselves in, we try by all means to prevent polluting the environment.”he said.
Meanwhile, Mhlanga said the council was faced with challenges in maintaining burst and leaking water pipes because of financial constraints. He urged residents to report incidences of burst pipes as a matter of urgency.
In 2013, a German Development Corporation official attached to the council revealed that a study they conducted in the high-density suburbs of Mambo and Mtapa showed that one out of two households had serious problems of water leaks through taps and pumps with a lot of treated water going to waste.