From George Maponga in Masvingo
Northern parts of the arid Chivi District are set to get a potable water supply boost with plans at an advanced stage to resuscitate a mothballed piped water scheme following the release of over $1,3 million from Government under the devolution programme.
The revival of Chombwe Piped Water Scheme will see 17 083 households scattered across nine wards in northern parts of the district getting access to water in their homes.
Chombwe piped water project was commissioned by the colonial regime, but collapsed in 1995 owing to obsolescence of water conveyancing, pumping and purification infrastructure.
There are high hopes the revival of the scheme will breathe life into the Chivi north economy as water supplies will be guaranteed at business centres and schools in the area together with the fast-expanding Mhandamabwe Business Centre.
Chivi District Development Coordinator Mr Vafios Hlavati yesterday said civil engineers were on the ground to assess what needs to be done to resuscitate the piped water project.
Mr Hlavati said the entire second tranche of $717 000 availed by Treasury under devolution had been committed to the Chombwe project.
“We received two tranches of money under devolution and the last disbursement we got amounting to $717 000 was allocated to Chombwe where we have already started revival of the piped water scheme that collapsed in 1995,” he said.
“Engineers from council (Chivi RDC) and DDF are already on the ground to assess and recommend what needs to be replaced especially things such as conveyancing pipes and valves among other things.”
He said the project will change the face of northern Chivi and hailed Government for conceiving devolution.
“We are happy with the support of the Minister of State for Masvingo (Ezra Chadzamira) who has been working tirelessly to make sure the piped water scheme is revived.
“It will benefit 17 083 households across the area stretching from Mhandamabwe business centre, Chivi Growth point up to Chinembiri,” he said.
Mr Hlavati said part of the funds will also go towards face lifting offices of the water superintendent at Makovere in the district that were now in a state of neglect.
The Chivi Development Coordinator praised Lowveld sugar producer Tongaat Huletts Zimbabwe which he said had pledged to chip in towards completion of the project while Murowa Diamond Mine was still being courted to also play a part.
He said besides funding for Chombwe, his council had also received an initial tranche of $600 00o from the Government under devolution which went towards the construction of Bwanya Clinic in Ward 3.