Uganda: Piped Water Brings Smile to Busia Residents

More than 10,000 residents of Masafu Sub-county in Busia District are relieved after getting access to clean and safe water.

The solar-powered water supply system, which was commissioned on Tuesday, was constructed by Innovation Africa, a non- profit organisation, with funding from Young Adults of the Sephardic community (YASC) from Israel and the United States.

The Shs130m project supplied water to Bumayi, Budibya, Bukhembo East, Bukhembo West and Buyonsi villages in Mankinga Parish in Masafu Sub-county.

More than 12 taps have been installed in the villages and each tap serves more than 200 homesteads.

The beneficiaries said previously they would trek seven kilometres in search for water.

"We have been walking long distances to fetch water from seasonal wells, which we also shared with animals," Mr Silas Buluma, a resident of Bukhembo East, said.

Mr Buluma said the women would be exposed to risks such as snake bites.

Mr Patrick Godfrey Ngolobe, the chairperson of Water User Committee of Mawanga Parish, said community members had been suffering from water-borne diseases.

"Diarrhoea, vomiting, typhoid, malaria and other water-borne related infections will become history in this area," he said.

Ms Mayende Constance, the Bumayi Village chairperson, said they would use the water project to grow vegetables and make bricks to support their families.

"Now our children are going to get meals such as lunch on time because we have water nearby," Ms Mayende said, adding that availability of water will change the standards of living.

Mr Milton Oguttu, the head teacher of Budibya Primary School, said extension of water has improved the welfare of pupils.

"Our girls no longer suffer like they used to during their menstruation period due to lack of water," Mr Oguttu said.

The organisation also provided primary schools in the district with scholastic materials, including reusable pads, chalk boards, books, desks, maize flour, among others.

Mr Robert Khakhosi, the project manager of Innovation Africa, said they have also installed solar systems in health centres.

He, however, appealed to government to embrace the use of water pump systems because they are cheaper and easy to repair than drilling boreholes.

Ms Sivan Ya'ari, the president of Innovation Africa, said they would continue extending water to African villages.

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