Olukupa Combined School in Oshikoto that had to close last week due to a shortage of water has reopened after it was agreed at a meeting last Friday that the school would start receiving water from Onankale Rural Water Supply and a borehole to be drilled for villagers.
The school and community have since last year been struggling with accessing clean water, as the borehole which was supplying the school and community with water ran dry as a result of the recurrent drought that has disrupted water supply.
Last week the community refused to accept the water delivered by water tankers and had on two occasions turned away a water truck coming to deliver water at the school, amid demands that villagers wanted a reliable source of water such as a water pipeline.
The school is situated in Nehale LyaMpingana Constituency and has about 360 learners from grades 3 to 10. Last week both learners and staff vowed not to attend classes until the current water crisis was permanently resolved.
The school principal Abel Nekomba told New Era the issue has not yet been resolved.
“The school held a meeting with the constituency councillor Leevi Reinholdt, Onankale Rural Water Supply and the chairperson of the regional council, Samuel Shivute, and we came up with two resolutions. The first resolution was that Olukupa village should get a borehole.
“Resolution two was that Onankale Rural Water Supply should continue supplying the school with water throughout,” said Nekomba.
Nekomba further stated that residents further lamented the fact the road network has also been a challenge because the area is sandy.
“Today they had to use a water tanker from Omusati to deliver water, because the one of Onankale is in the garage. The road is really poor,” added Nekomba
He said the drilling of the Olukupa borehole did not start as agreed upon.
New Era understands the community was not happy with the short-term water delivery and instead want a permanent reliable source of water, since the provision of water has been haunting the community for nearly 13 months.
Meanwhile the Oshikoto regional governor Henock Kankoshi is unhappy that water tanks are used to provide water to the community because he feels a lot of money is being spent on the exercise.
“When the water tanker reached the gate it was locked and people refused to accept water from the water tanker. They demanded that another borehole be drilled in the area. They are also forgetting that it is a long process involved to drill a borehole as the water sample first needs to be tested, whether it is fit for human consumption, which might take long,” said Kankoshi.
“They should differentiate between politics and civic issues, instead of mixing the two. At the same time these learners who are vowing to stay away from school until there is water, will be affected as they will still write the same exams as others,” he said.