21 September 2018
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Tuesday, 13 March 2018 11:28

People of GVH Mayenje at risk of contracting water borne diseases

Written by  Mphatso Nkuonera
Villagers trying to establish the problem on the borehole -pic by Mphatso Nkuonera Villagers trying to establish the problem on the borehole -pic by Mphatso Nkuonera

Lilongwe, March 13: As cholera continues haunting the country, people of Group Village Headman Mayenje, have expressed worry over the use of unclean water following the breakdown of the only borehole in the area four months ago.

Village head Mtimuni told Mana that their recent meeting that was attended by 17 concerned village heads under Traditional Authority (TA) Mazengera resolved to hire an expert to repair the borehole.

“We are drinking water from a well that was dug after seeing no solution to the challenges we are facing now. We agreed in a meeting to hire someone to repair it for us, but the challenge is that the spare parts required are expensive for the community to buy.

“The distance to the well is about four kilometers, and again our women scramble for this very unclean water due to growing population that uses this well,” said Gertrude Samuel, 44.

Village headmen Gomani and Katsilizika echoed that the situation is putting people’s lives at risk more especially this time where there is cholera outbreak in the country which is a hygiene related disease.  

“This unclean source of water may lead to cholera outbreak and other water borne diseases, everyone else is scared of this situation,” hinted village head Gomani.

The village heads said they approached different people to assist on fixing the problem but nothing positive seems to be cropping up.

“We received some experts today (Sunday) sent by Kaliyopa Malabada a well-wisher to get the exact requirements. He has promised to rescue us by meeting all bills, but we are not sure how soon that would be,” village head Chapsinja said.

When Mana visited the broken borehole villagers were busy with the expert who was trying to establish the actual problem.

Councilor for Mazengera Ward, Samson Chazia, said he had failed to assist with the problem since the council is aware of the challenge in his area, but nothing positive was cropping up.

“It’s unfortunate that this situation could go unresolved for so long now, people are indeed drinking unprotected water and are exposed to various waterborne diseases. My effort to assist is hitting a blank wall due financial resources,” Chazia said.

District Water Development Officer for Lilongwe, Marvel Tibu, said her office would take up the matter although it is difficult to look after 6,389 boreholes the district has.

“The community is supposed to maintain these boreholes because we cannot manage to repair for them. However, due to cholera outbreak where Lilongwe is second on the districts hit hard, this office will intervene immediately,” Tibu said.

She added that it is recommended that boreholes be sunk at every half kilometers, but her office was failing to meet that due to financial challenges.

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