RUNDU - The Mayana Community Water Project (MCWP) needs close to N$2 million to erect a water point in Mayana Village to provide clean water for drinking as well as irrigation.
Chairperson of the MCWP Joseph Mbamba told reporters recently during a weeklong educational tour for local journalists to promote tourism destinations in the Caprivi and Kavango regions, that the project was scheduled for completion by the end of 2011.
A lack of funds has delayed the project that will make use of solar energy to pump water from the Kavango River to the community living near Nkwazi Lodge in the Mayana area. The lodge is located about 20 kilometres east of Rundu.
So far, concrete pillars have been sunk in the river when the water was low, to form part of the foundation for the water distribution pipes.
“The project will enable the community to become self-sufficient and self-sustainable.
Villagers need to permanently move away from the flood plains by providing them with a local water supply,” he stressed.
Currently, villagers’ livelihoods depend on the Kavango River, as they collect water from the river for drinking, cooking and to water crops.
They also use the river to bathe and do laundry, while animals also use the river.
According to Mbamba, the project is the dream of Nkwazi Lodge owner Wynand Peyper, to pump water using solar power to a storage tank at a safe and convenient location, where villagers have access to clean water.
He said taps would installed for water consumption by people, but water will also be provided for animals at various points as required.
During flooding, many villagers are forced to move away from the river and relocate to areas some 2.5 kilometers away, where there is no source of water.
The MCWP has so far collected N$70 000 in funds, partly made possible by committee member, Mike Hemming, who became interested in the project during a visit to the lodge in 2009 during flooding.
Hemming is a fundraiser and targets individuals as well as organisations in Germany and England.
Mbamba said the project offers the Mayana community the chance to improve their lives and for future generations, by eliminating the threat of annual flooding and providing a permanent supply of clean water.
“It will reduce epidemics like cholera and enable families to grow healthy crops, sell their surplus produce and generate income to pay school fees and buy clothes,” he said.
He explained that the water would be pumped through 160 mm PVC pipes to the south side of the gravel road (D3402).
A storage tank with a capacity of 150 000 litres will be sited near the house of Headman Berthold Sinimbu, and stand on a 9-12 metre tower. Two distribution lines will extend two kilometers east and west from the storage tank.
The project is done in partnership with local water supplier, NamWater, while civil works and construction are undertaken by Letoke Limane Constructions, assisted by the Josephs’s Construction company that employs community members. –Nampa