14 June 2018

Gambia: Estate Dwellers Lament Prolonged Water Shortage

Residents of Kunkujang Badjie Estate, lament the prolong water shortage in their community; that for nearly two months, they have not received water supply from the nation's Utility service provider.

"The situation seems to be aggravating for the past two months," residents told this reporter. "Those with boreholes have connected extension pipes from their houses into the streets, to supply water which the people desperately need," they said.

Babucarr Ceesay, said the water problem on them is such that they need an alternative water supply which appears to be even difficult for them; that this is why they are demanding for a swift response for NAWEC to resolve the water situation.

"The Estate consist of about 180 or more compounds situated in Kunkujang. But as I talk to you, we source water from neighboring settlements," Ceesay said; that open wells have become their only alternative source of water and that due to demand, the wells have been stretched to their limits; that if one does not go early, one ends up getting murky water.

Settlers lament that both public private taps have not been flowing out the precious liquid but will see trickles at the late hours of between 4 am to 5am.

Some of the women who spoke to this reporter, could be seen carrying buckets of water on her head. Others hire donkey-cats to carry their water containers for D5 Dalasi per gallon.

"If you do not have money to pay the donkey-cat owners, you have to carry the water containers on your head which is very difficult, especially during this holy month of Ramadan," she said.

When contacted, the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of NAWEC Pierre Sylva, said he is not aware of the water shortage in Kunkujang Badjie Estate. Pierre told this reporter that the residents should have contacted them so that they can send a team to visit the estate.

"If we were contacted, we would have sent delegates to visit the area and see what the problem is," he said. According to Pierre, there is no water shortage issue that he is aware of in connection to Kunkujang Badjie Estate.

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