Gwanda Council, Zinwa tiff leaves town dry

GWANDA town, including its health facilities endured a week without water in due to a decade old wrangle between the Town Council and the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA).
By Staff Writer
This emerged from Matebeleland South MP Honorable Sipho Mokone during a National Assembly sitting last Thursday.
“Good afternoon to you Madam Speaker. I rise on an issue of national importance. This is a follow up to the Gwanda Town Council water crisis. I first tabled the issue last year,to be precise, I brought it on the 4th of August, 2021. It is with a heavy heart that I stand before the august House today on the same issue. After the response by the Minister in this august House, He visited the town and plans to hand over the plant to Gwanda Municipality were done but up to now, there has been no implementation,” she said.
The ten year old tiff between ZINWA and the Gwanda town council is over the issue that the former does not want to hand over the Water treatment plant to the latter.
The town could be sitting on a ticking cholera and or typhoid time bomb as this battle of ownership of the water system plant has left residents highly vulnerable to these water-borne diseases
MP Mokone said the introduction of the prepaid billing system for water saw the cash-strapped Gwanda Town council being charged to purchase water for its residents. The Council did not have the money resulting in it being cut off from water supply.
“As Im speaking with you right now and it is almost a week now since the town has run dry. I had a question yesterday on the same issue but unfortunately the Minister responsible for that was not available to respond. I see this lack of water as a breach of the Constitution, Section 77 of the Zimbabwean Constitution which stipulates that everyone has a right to safe and clean water. I am therefore appealing to you Madam Speaker, to make sure that the responsible Minister explains to this august House whether he is reneging from his earlier position so that the residents of Gwanda may know the current position. I thank you,” she said.

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