Gwanda runs dry as Zinwa introduces bulk water meters

Two Nations Correspondent

Gwanda – Gwanda Town is running dry soon after the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) activated bulk pre-paid water meters to push the local authority to settle a $300 million water bill that is pending.

Zinwa’s uMzingwane Catchment area manager Farai Manzira warned that the town will be totally dry in a weeks’ time if Gwanda Municipality does not pay more money.

 “We have credited water tokens that can only last seven days in all the four meters and more payments must be made in order to enjoy uninterrupted service,” said Manzira.

 Zinwa spokesperson Marjorie Munyonga said residents are paying their water bills and Gwanda town must be honourable enough to pass on that money to Zinwa for the water services.

Gwanda financial director, Xolisani Dube passed the blame on Government institutions and some residents who owe the local authority $330 million.

On Tuesday the Jahunda reservoir prepaid allocation was exhausted forcing residents to use unsafe water.

“We have no option but to fetch water from here,” said Norman Moyo as he drew water from Mtshabezi river.

In response to the crisis, Gwanda Municipality has threatened legal action against residents who have not been paying their water bills.

 “Accounts with balances outstanding for more than three months will be taken for litigation. Payments must be made within 14 days or defaulters will be handed over to council lawyers at their cost,” reads a Council notice to residents.

“Our understanding is that residents get service from the Municipality of Gwanda and pay for their water, and in turn Gwanda is supposed to use those funds to pay its dues to Zinwa. The introduction of prepaid meters must really not affect residents,” said Munyonga.

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