The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) donated eight water tankers worth N$12.7 million to government to help Namibia reach the targets for sustainable development.
“Just because some parts and areas of this country were fortunate enough to receive good rainfall this year, some people seem to think the water crisis is over. They are wrong,” US Ambassador to Namibia Thomas Daughton said during the handover of the tankers in the capital last week Wednesday.
Daughton says the rain is temporary reprieve, not a solution. He said growth in Namibia’s population and economy would continue to put pressure on the country’s water resources, even in good rain years.
“More and more Namibians will want access to safe, reliable drinking water. That means water should remain on top of everyone’s agenda for years to come,” he said.
On receiving the donation, Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Water and Forestry Anna Shiweda said the donation would help address the shortfall in the provision of water to communities affected by the drought.
“There is no doubt that this contribution from the USAID will assist us in closing the gap between the water resources and our people during times of drought and other emergencies,” she said.
Shiweda remarked that given the harsh semi-arid conditions, the Power Star Truck off-road water tankers could not have come at a more opportune time.
Many of the Namibian communities still relied on boreholes for water, but this was still insufficient.
Water tankers services were considered the most expensive method of supplying water to communities, compared to the drilling of boreholes.
However, it remained the most reliable method at the disposal of the government to supply water to affected communities that it could not reach through other water supply methods during emergencies.
She added that water tankers services play an important role in improving the supply of water to communities, particularly given the fact that drought did not only affect the water quantity in boreholes, but also the quality of underground water.