HARARE residents who have been relying on bulk water supplies are crying foul after suppliers hiked their prices for 5 000 litres by 350 percent from $40 to $180.
In separate interviews, residents told The Herald that the prices were now prohibitive and were likely to force them to look for alternative sources of water.
"The water hikes are putting our health at risk as we can no longer afford to buy the same quantities we used to at the old price.
"We are now forced to drink water from unsafe sources because council water supplies are not reliable," said Ms Takudzwa Nderere from Zimre Park.
Ms Nderere said water was not a luxury, but a basic requirement arguing that they get water supplies at least thrice a week.
"We buy water because it is necessity, we need it for domestic purposes so we have no option but to buy it. These increases are going to put more pressure on our pockets," she said.
Another resident from Greendale, Mrs Sheila Chikono lamented the price hikes, describing them as devastating.
"These prices are devastating because these suppliers get the water from the boreholes which are right here in Greendale but they sell it to us at a higher price which does not add up at all," said Mrs Chikono.
She said her family of nine use about 10 000 litres of water per week which would require them to fork out $360, up from $120.
Some of the bulk water suppliers contacted attributed the increases to rising costs.