The Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate is spearheading a $4,5 million borehole drilling project under the Command Water Harvesting Programme. The programme, which is meant to enable communities adapt to climate variability, will see four boreholes being drilled in each constituency. The borehole drilling programme is being implemented in the broader context of the Ministry's identified 100-day quick wins programme as guided by President Emmerson Mnangagwa during his maiden speech in Cabinet last week.
Addressing journalists yesterday on the progress of the programme, Minister of Environment, Water and Climate Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri said work was already underway with the Zimbabwe National Water Authority deploying drilling rigs to Beitbridge East Constituency and Matabeleland North, Binga South Constituency at Manyanda Secondary School.
Yesterday, zinwa deployed two more rigs in Chivi North Constituency. "Under the same programme of Command Water Harvesting weir, construction is already underway with cement for construction works being distributed in constituencies such as Bindura North Constituency, Muzvezve in Mashonaland West, Mberengwa South, Buhera South and Hwange East constituencies.
"We are also implementing the rooftops rain water harvesting programme in both rural and urban areas such as Muntu Clinic in Umguza Constituency and Mupotezi Clinic in Mutasa North constituency," she said.
Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri said the three programmes were meant to enhance water harvesting and make communities adapt and mitigate against the adverse impacts of climate variability and climate change. "Its success will no doubt enhance food security through community gardens, stock watering and nutrition which are all in line with the Zim-Asset vision of an empowered society and growing economy.
"We are now left with 93 days of the 100. We all must work hard to drill the four boreholes, construct weirs and harvest water from our roof tops in each of the constituencies," said Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri. This programme will continue until we cover the whole country," she said.
She urged Ministers of State for Provincial Affairs to launch the programme and Members of Parliament to urgently submit the four priority borehole sites that will be drilled during the programme. Command Water Harvesting programme is aimed at transforming livelihoods of people at grassroot level. Under the programme, there shall be construction of dams and also small weirs on rivers to allow for the collection of water during the rainy season for use during the dry period.
The programme will see zinwa, which is the management lead agency providing technical supervision during the construction period, while communities under the guidance of their local leadership structures will mobilise resources such as cement, rocks, labour and other materials.
The programme will also include de-silting of silted water bodies. The local leadership will also be critical in the identification of areas in their respective wards to build the weirs.