THE government will soon embark on a campaign to encourage members of the public to save water and avoid littering to reduce the outbreak of diseases. The two-year Water Conservation Awareness and Zero Litter Campaign will be launched by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai during the first week of next month in Harare's Budiriro high-density suburb.
The campaign would later be taken to other cities and towns across the country.
Budiriro is one of the dirtiest suburbs in Harare, where a cholera outbreak killed scores of people in 2008.
Executive director of the Institute of Water and Sanitation Development, Noma Neseni, said the campaign was designed to sensitise society about the importance of cleanliness and water conservation.
"At the end of the day, we want a society which appreciates that littering is shameful, it is disgusting to urinate in public, using flying toilets and open defacation is hazardous and there is value in conservation among many other aims of this campaign," Neseni said.
The campaign also aims at encouraging residents to use water sparingly by using smaller toilet cisterns instead of the current 10-litre ones which are viewed as wasteful.
It also aims to encourage the use of buckets for such things as bathing, irrigation and washing cars. Residents are encouraged to use bath water for some of these chores.
The city council is also working on a project to generate methane gas electricity at Firle, which currently receives power for only eight hours per day, negatively affecting its operations.
Harare City Council director of waste management Dombo Chibanda said they were also in the process of buying more equipment including four skip trucks, pole litter bins and 200 litre bins for use at various places including shopping malls.
Once renowned for their cleanliness, Harare and other cities in the country have since lost their glitter as litter continues to pile in alleyways, roadsides and shopping centres.
Water rationing, too, is rampant in some suburbs as municipalities try to make do with the little water they have.