Deal to ease Masvingo water woes

MASVINGO - A $40 million loan deal that could solve chronic water problems in Masvingo is in the pipeline, according to city mayor Femias Chakabuda.

Chakabuda told the Daily News on Sunday that council was on the verge of receiving the money from an undisclosed partner to construct a new water treatment plant.

“I can say that the water problems in the city will soon ease as we are about to finalise a deal with a certain company to get the money that we have been struggling to get over the years,” said Chakabuda.

“There is light in this but we cannot disclose the name of the business partner until we are through with all the processes, then we will call a press conference and make a public announcement,” said Chakabuda.

The city has been struggling to raise $40 million for the water project to plug water shortages that have perennially affected the country’s oldest town.

A booming population has overwhelmed water supply infrastructure,which has not been upgraded since it was first put in place by the colonial government in the 1960s.

Chakabuda said the project should take less than a year to complete once work has started.

“We are ready and as soon as we get the money work will start. We have our plans in place and I do not think we will take long to finish the project because everything has since been planned well,” he said.

Masvingo residents sometimes go for days without water,exposing them to diseases such as cholera. Council blames ageing water infrastructure,which no longer has the capacity to meet growing demand.

The plant has a capacity to pump 24 000 mega litres per day, only enough for 40 000 in a city which requires 60 000 mega litres per day for the current population of slightly over 100 000.

Previous efforts to get government assistance have failed,forcing council to seek alternative funding.

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