Residents of Budiriro, Highfield and Glen View have been spending hours queuing for water at a few available boreholes. There have also been reports of violent clashes at the boreholes with some people getting impatient of waiting for their turn to fetch water. The Harare Residents Trust (HRT) on Thursday said two men were injured in Glen View after a fight over a bucket of water. Anti-riot police had also to be called to quell violence in Glen View B, which is one of the areas hard hit by the water shortages.
Harare City Council has blamed the water shortages on a “huge pipe burst” at its Morton Jeffrey water works.
Juliet Masiyambiri, the HRT chairperson in Glen Norah said the situation was getting worse by each day. “Now residents are demanding an audience with the council management,” Masiyambiri said.
“Potential demonstrations might erupt anytime if this situation is not immediately addressed. People cannot live without water. This is unacceptable.”
HRT accused council management of bungling an offer by the United Nations’ Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to intervene and offer water bowsers.
The residents association said council was dilly dallying on a letter of confirmation of the water crisis requested by UNICEF before it intervenes.
City council officials in the past have blamed the now frequent water shortages on ageing infrastructure and a population explosion.