UNICEF’s Communications Officer, Tsitsi Singizi, said the UN agency was determined to assist urban councils across the country through donations of water purification chemicals such as aluminium sulphate, lime and chlorine. “We have no intention of ceasing of stopping water purification donations to all urban councils. Our ceasing of the donations will depend on the urban councils’ capacities of operating unaided. We are in constant dialogue with the local authorities on the issue of water and sanitation and we have no set time frame of ceasing the supplies,” said Singizi in an interview.
She, however, could not be drawn into revealing the amount that has so far been channelled to water purification programmes since January. UNICEF started donating water purification chemicals to the country’s local authorities in 2008 to contain the spread of a cholera pandemic that was sweeping across the country. Local authorities were struggling to contain the cholera outbreak due to lack of foreign currency as the country was, at the time, still using the hyper-inflated local currency.