Some relief for Harare residents as city resumes pumping water
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HARARE - Zimbabwe's capital Harare will
temporarily resume pumping water at its main water works on
Tuesday, an official said, bringing some relief to residents who
have endured months without water.
Most of Harare's water and sewer infrastructure is in a
state of disrepair leaving the city unable to supply some of its
more than 2 million residents.
Harare City Council acting mayor Enock Mupamawonde told
reporters on Monday that authorities had shut the Morton Jaffray
water works citing shortages of foreign currency to import
On Tuesday he said chemicals had been secured that would
last a week.
The southern African nation is gripped by its worst economic
crisis in a decade that has seen inflation soar and citizens
endure shortages of foreign exchange and fuel, and electricity
cuts that last up to 18 hours.
Mupamawonde said the city had bought chemicals from local
suppliers and pumping of water would resume after 4pm. Residents would start receiving water on Tuesday just
before midnight, he said.
"We are taking this as a buffer period to work around what
happens next," he said at a media briefing, adding that some of
the city's chemical supplies were stuck at the border with South
Africa in the south, awaiting payment and clearance.
The closure of the treatment plant had raised the prospect
of an outbreak of water diseases like cholera, a year after
Zimbabwe suffered its worst cholera outbreak in a decade, which
killed at least 26 people mainly in Harare.
Mupamawonde said Harare would continue to face water
shortages unless new dams that have been on the cards for more
than two decades are built.
The city would drill more public boreholes and truck
portable water to residents as short term solutions, he said.