Fresh water shortages strike Harare

Often in times of political unrest, the most severe casualty is the shortage of basic human needs. Currently the most severe of these basic shortages is the fresh supply of drinking water in the capital Harare.

People queing for water in Harare.
People queing for water in Harare.

Locals in this urban area queue for hours for a bucket of water from manmade boreholes, often extracting tainted water. In August 2008 the country faced a major Cholera outbreak that threatened to bring the entire country to its knees (WHO Report: 2008). Over 10 billion US dollars was donated from the international community to overhaul and rebuild the country’s, especially it’s urban areas’ water supply chains (UNICEF:2009). Now, four years later, the ruling party has done little to repair the problem as locals in highly populated areas still queue for water and disease runs rife.

The most concerning discovery brought to light by the World Health Organisation’s weekly disease report in Zimbabwe shows that there is a startling spike in the prevalence of preventable water-borne diseases such as Typhoid and Malaria, assumedly aggravated by excess stagnant water causing a steady rise in the parasite carrier’s birth (WHO Epidemiological Report, 5-11 March 2012).

This footage illustrates the mounting frustration and helplessness of locals who are forced to queue for water even in urban areas like Harare. Fights break out as locals desperate for water try and get their share.

Post published in: Analysis

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