The Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) has intervened to mitigate water shortages in Mount Darwin East through a dam scooping programme.
From July to November, villagers in Mount Darwin East normally experience difficult times in search for clean water for both human and livestock consumption as boreholes and dams dry up.
At Bungwe, ZINWA has however brought relief by desilting Kakari Dam built in 1971 which had all but dried up.
Ward councillor Oscar Chimusoro said: “This is the only dam that has water in this area and cattle were coming from afar. Some were getting stuck in the mud.
Women and children were travelling about 20 kilometres to Ruya River to get water and this was unsafe.”
Dried up Kakari dam, livestock stranded to find clean water.
Village head Matthew Kashiri said: “We are grateful for the scooping of our dam. At least our livestock will have water,” adding, “the river has dried up 3 times before.”
ZINWA Engineer Takudzwa Masvinyangwa noted that the desilting process will restore 25 percent of the dam’s capacity.
“Silt reduces the quality and quantity of water bodies so we have to desilt, but desilting is an expensive process and it does not happen often. So I advise the residents here to manage the dam so as to avoid silt,” he said.
Mount Darwin Legislator, Honourable Norman Marikisi expressed gratitude to ZINWA for desilting the dam, but added that at least 5 more dams, which are not on budget, are urgently needed to provide water.
“We thank ZINWA, an arm of the government led by President Mnangagwa. This dam had not been scooped since 1971 so it is only the Second Republic that has made it possible,” he said.
The national broadcaster ZBC also reports that 20 kilometres away from Kakari Dam lies Gumbeze Village where village head Matisemi Gumbeze has also issued a distress call for the dam to be desilted and boreholes repaired, as residents now spend the whole day digging for water.