Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

29 December 2012

Tanzania: Rukwa RC Proposes Rural Water Authorities to End Water Blues

Sumbawanga — RUKWA Regional Commissioner, Ms Stella Manyanya has advised the Ministry of Water to explore possibilities to establish special Rural Water Supply Authorities (RWSA) to bring services closer to the people.

She further observed that supply of clean and safe water could cut down between 60 and 70 per cent of communicable diseases with women and children as the most vulnerable victims.

Speaking to the "Daily News on Saturday" recently, the RC said majority of Tanzanians leave in rural areas where agricultural production is undertaken. However, poor health due to lack of clean water, she said would equally disrupt social and economic activities.

"Introduction of water authorities in rural areas will be a feasible endeavour. Some of the water authorities in rural areas seem to aim for profit making. Water supply responsibilities have been left in the hands of district councils, majority already pre-occupied with many other development projects.

So it happens that water supply in rural area is most often not among the councils' priorities," RC Manyanya explained Therefore, I call upon the government through the water ministry, she added to work out deliberate strategies to put in place rural water supply authorities to offset the common shortages of clean and safe water supply.

"Water is life. Lack of electricity in rural areas can be tolerated but not water. Slowly rural communities start to enjoy solar generated electricity," she said She also asked the central government to give hand to the initiative through budgetary allocation to the ministry of water, at least to have deep wells dug in different villages for a reliable supply of water.

Supplying of clean and safe water in Rukwa Region, for example, stands at only 50 per cent - according to RC and the government has started to take the initiative such that eight deep wells have been drilled along Lwiche River Basin to ease water blues in Sumbawanga.

"The water project plan aims at drilling of 13 deep wells along the river and rehabilitation of old water pipes including fitting new pipes for pumping water from the source to Sumbawanga town," she concluded.

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