Improve water supply, quality urgently

EDITOR — The prevailing water shortages and the quality of water in most of Harare’s high density suburbs including Glen View and Budiriro should be addressed as a matter of urgency. It is clear that the Harare City Council is neglecting to provide adequate and safe domestic water to residents, a constitutional right. The supply and quality of water has been a problem in this country over the years.

Areas such as  Budiriro, Epworth and newly-established suburbs are at a greater risk of contracting diseases like cholera and typhoid as water supply infrastructure can no longer meet the  new demand.
The issue of water is responsible for the recent outbreak of cholera that has claimed a number of lives just recently.

Lack of access to safe water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene practices are responsible for the prevalence of preventable diseases in these areas. The problems of inadequate water supply in high density, low income communities results in exposure to pollution, especially when people resort to digging shallow wells.

The alteration of water quality through sewerage effluent discharges increase concentration of phosphates and nitrates that in turn result in algal blooms and eutrophication. Tap water, when available is clearly polluted as changes in colour, odour, taste, temperature and turbidity are clearly prevalent.

This is a situation residents can not afford to ignore any more. The relevant authorities must hasten to address this problem before it gets out of hand. If this explosive situation is not handled with care we will continue having cholera outbreak in the country.

Domestic water supply in high density suburbs, both in terms of quality and quantity, is far from satisfactory and this has exposed residents to various water-related challenges and risks.
Populations in these poor communities are experiencing utter deprivation of safe water supplies and proper sanitary facilities despite paying for the provision of safe water to the council for years.

It is heart-rending to hear of government and council officials purchasing top-of-the-range vehicles, awarding themselves heavy perks and allowances while we do not have safe drinking water.
This  is a gross violation of human rights. Someone must act before it is too late!

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