Byo Considers Water Shedding As Dam Levels Drop

By Dumisani Nyoni

Bulawayo, October 06, 2016 – THE Bulawayo City Council (BCC) is considering re-introducing water shedding with effect from next month after recent projections put the city’s water levels in its supply dams to critically low levels by the start of next year.

According to the latest council minutes, Bulawayo’s dams were 34,01% full as at August 24, 2016.

Mtshabezi dam was 59,89%, Insiza 50,87%, Lower Ncema 38,98%, Inyankuni 14,02%, Umzingwane 5,69% and Upper Ncema 1,48% full.

“It is evident that the available water in the dams needs to be conserved and one of the strategies is to water shed. For a start, a 24 hour regime is recommended,” reads part of the minutes.

The council proposed its water shedding schedule to start in November, 2016.

According to a proposed schedule, Nkulumane, Emganwini, Nketa, Pumula, Sizinda, Tshabalala, Bellevue, Newton West, Southwold, and West Somerton, would experience water-shedding on Mondays.

Also areas such as Esigodini, Imbizo Barracks, Mbalabala Barracks, Mzinyathini Irrigation Scheme as well as eastern suburbs would experience water cuts on Mondays.

Suburbs such as Cowdray Park, Luveve, Magwegwe, Njube, Entumbane, Emakhandeni, Barbourfields, Mzilikazi, Nguboyenja, Mpopoma, Makokoba, Lobengula, Pelandaba and Matshobane, would have their water cut on Tuesdays.

Only the industrial sites and the Central Business District (CBD) would be exempted from the water-shedding regime.

However, the council recommended that the proposed water shedding programme be introduced if the water situation became more precarious, and the assessment thereof was left to the Director of Engineering Services.

Water shedding is a system of conserving tap water by cutting supplies for a given period.

At its height in 2012, residents went without water for up to 72 hours every week.