Assistant Town Clerk, Tapiwa Marerwa, said Gweru was facing a crisis and may be forced to sink 36 boreholes as a supplementary water source for domestic and industrial use. “In July, Gwenhoro dam was five percent full and the situation has brought serious challenges to the city’s ability to supply water until the next rainy season,” said Marerwa. “Amapongokwe dam, Gwenhoro’s back up water source, was at 45 percent capacity but sadly it can only supply 40 percent of our needs. However, there is no need for residents to panic as measures will be put in place to alleviate the water shortages.” Residents are concerned that the city has no money to deal with the situation.
“To make matters worse, the government issued a directive to Gweru to write-off the $8 million debt owed to the council by the residents,” said one resident.
A council official said: “The council’s coffers are dry because rate payers were excited by the cancellation of their debts and are not paying outstanding bills”.