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Saturday, October 4, 2014

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. So important to join hands with C of Harare and for example make sure OUR streets are free of litter and we are eco with Zesa and water we use, so perhaps no green verges in winter!!  Great news that the City and Conservancy are revamping Ballantyne and Blair dams and the area made into a place we can again visit for recreation. That was news from the Borrowdale ratepayers meeting last Thursday. The Mayor spoke as did some of his colleagues and our councillor Rusty. We were also told about the switching on of water in various suburbs nearby. Well worth the effort to attend! Valerie

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Bulk water selling from residential areas means surrounding neighbours boreholes are depleted from much needed water supply from the water table as well as unbearable noise and dust made by the delivery trucks.  All bulk water activities should ideally be done outside city limits.....  I talk from experience having to live right next door to a bulk water supplier. SMM

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I’m adding my opinion to the debate - NO WAY are we, or our hard-working bulk water suppliers, to pay this extra charge. Isn’t it called extortion?  We’re buying water because the water authorities are unable to supply it, continually citing “no money”. Well time to say TOUGH LUCK. Water is VITAL and ESSENTIAL to every single person and household in this country and we are not paying any more than we do. They tax fuel, boreholes, equipment, anything they can and it’s ENOUGH!!!Jenny

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We are all here because we appreciate the good things, but that doesn't mean we should not complain when government and council are grossly incompetent, and we are charged for services that aren't delivered.  If you don't complain nothing improves.  Certainly one solution is the collection of grey water but not all of us are fortunate enough to have the capital necessary to invest.  And regardless of how much we appreciate the good things, we cannot live without water!

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I both agree and disagree with the comment below. Certainly it’s nice to have a positive attitude, and I agree that if we are going to live here we have to appreciate the good things in life that Zimbabwe offers us (and there are many) ... however, as someone who routinely practices all of the rainwater harvesting and grey water recycling ideas (my kids bath in 2 inches of water which is then used to flush the loo!) due to having been forced to buy water for the last four years I do think that the sort of debate and discussion stimulated on the Bambazonke list also helps us all to be better citizens. It is pointless sitting around waiting for Harare City Council to just ‘fix’ the problem, so instead we need to be proactive – not just sitting around moaning for the sake of it, but sharing ideas and thoughts through constructive fora such as this. It really does seem to be the case that those with older boreholes use them with impunity with no thought to the effects of their high levels of consumption. If just one person decides to stop watering their verge (and the surrounding tarmac!) due to this discussion, then it has done a good thing! I do agree there are a lot of people who seem to just moan all the time and have lost the joy of life, but I wouldn’t put the Bambazonke discussions into that category – I think some good can actually come of engaging in this way – in this case Mike has been good enough to forward some suggestions on to the council, and meanwhile we have hopefully stimulated some food for thought amongst the readership!

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Realistically - Water flowing from a tap is a luxury to a vast majority of the worlds population living below the poverty line, especially in Africa! I assume those lucky and affluent enough to have a borehole also have an education? So why then do people insist on watering their verges and cultivating gardens that are not water wise - it's plain and simple vanity, greed and irresponsibility. I think residents who do so should actually be taxed on this luxury.  We should be planting more indigenous plants and cutting back on lawn watering when our water table is low in the dry season.

The truth is, it is up to communities and residents to solve this problem together (cos the govt sure ain't gonna and it's silly to expect so) and fight for the preservation and future of our underground water sources. Wake up Harare and let's help ourselves and each other. From 'a keen protector of Harare wetlands' 
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Loads of comments on the unfairness of the new water tax, but very little solutions.  “Those out there” don’t know what’s being said “back here” – unless we make it known to them. It is a very unfortunate fact of life in Zimbabwe that Zinwa have failed to supply water – which has resulted in masses of people having to sink boreholes, entirely at their own cost, and pay the electricity and/or generator costs to pump water.  Like many others, my borehole is drying up.  I have been paying $11 per month, every month for “water” – but this has not happened in 3-4 years.  I won’t go the route of refuse collections. Our having to buy water is costing Zinwa sweet nothing – and regardless of how much (or little) of the “tax money” does ever reach their pockets – it will not be put to any productive use.  It will not increase the water table, it will not benefit the public.  Come on folks – let’s DO something about it!!  Jill

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I would also like to add to this topic since I have no borehole and no municipal water and rely totally on water deliveries during the dry season, which works out as my biggest household expense each month!  I agree wholeheartedly with all the sentiments expressed by those in a similar position to me, but would also like to add my infuriation at the thoughtless selfish owners of residences around Harare that are fortunate to have prolific boreholes who insist on a regular schedule of irrigating their outside verges for vanity’s sake, more particular so at the ones that do it in the heat of the day where a large percentage of the water is lost to evaporation anyway.  What a needless waste of a precious resource, and an insult to those of us without and have to pay vastly for.  The Water Authorities should also look to holding them accountable just as much and place a ban on this trend, and send an Inspector around the suburbs to issue fines or some such fee directly.  WATERLESS WHINGER

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ZINWA LEVY: The cost of living in Zim is already high. Government just made it higher by adding $100 per month onto an average family’s water bill. (*) Government cannot deliver clean piped water to half of the residents in Harare – yet they penalise people for making a plan to live. Zinwa’s levy is reprehensible when they are the very cause of the problem - being completely unable to provide this most fundamental requirement of human existence : clean water to drink and bathe. $4,000 installation of a borehole is met by one year of bowser deliveries. Viz  4,000 / $120 per 10,000 litres = 33 deliveries.  33 deliveries / 12months = 2.7 loads/mth = ave family. By the second year of the borehole you are home free as the Zesa cost is not that high – you can even get solar pumps.

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So my (readers) suggestions of a solution or two are as follows regarding our water situation:

1                     Fine anyone who is selling water that is retrieved from private boreholes and stop that from happening altogether. This will solve the largest portion of the water table diminishing.

2                     The Town council should allocate the water suppliers water sources to buy the water from. Then they can take a  portion of the proceeds that is fare that won’t push the price up too much to the consumer that makes it non affordable because the water suppliers are helping the Town council deal with the lack water supplied to the consumer easing their situation.

3                     The Town Council really needs to put the tax payers money back into the maintenance and repairs of the potable water system in the way of materials needed, chemicals, expertise, manpower, transport and Team work.

4                     This needs to be done in such a way that the consumer being us the tax payer actually sees results and starts to see how their hard earned money is being spent by the Town Council. This is not happening right now! This will also reduce the millions of liters being pumped away down the streets which is a total waste and major contribution to our water shortage.

5                      The Town Councils response time to leakages and repairs are ridiculous. We should have a number of emergency call lines say 10 that will get answered every time 24 hours a day and a few teams ready to be sent out to switch off the leak fast! Within an hour of the complaint. and repair it fast and properly but switch the line off so we don’t waste valuable water resources. Water leaks often run for days because of the lack of all of the above.

I am happy but could be a lot happier! I love Zimbabwe! I just wish some people would wake up!

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I buy my water in bulk and am fuming with these extra charges. Its ridiculous. Firstly if we had municipal water er wouldn't mind paying for it but Borrowdale west has not had water in years well at least we haven't. They now want to put meters in boreholes when the government didn't help to sink that borehole plus when boreholes are sunk there is still a fee paid to the government which is not a small figure so wat gives them the right to put charges on boreholes. The people that are selling water in bulk are doing the the water boards job by providing us with water. The person from Glen Lorne was right we are taxed even more and we don't see any changes. The government are meant to look after their people not worry about getting richer themselves. Everything is just a money making scheme.
Many thanks Lee-Ann
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WE HAVE BEEN VISITING MY BROTHER IN HARARE FOR SOME TEN YEARS NOW , AND IN THAT TIME I COULD MOST PROBABLY COUNT ON ONE HAND THE MIRACULOUS TIMES THEY HAVE HAD MUNICIPAL WATER DRIPPING FROM THERE TAPS.(LITERALLY DRIPPING). ITS ABOUT TIME THESE SECTORS ARE PRIVATIZED SO THAT THEY CAN RUN EFFICIENTLY, EFFECTIVELY AND IN A PROPER MANNER. THE COUNCILS , ZINWA AND SO ON HAVE PROVED THAT THEY ARE INCAPABLE OF PROVIDING THE RELEVANT SERVICES, REALLY THEY SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF THEM SELVES. THIS HAS GONE ON FOR FAR TO LONG. (STEP ASIDE AND LET SOME ONE ELSE SORT THESE PROBLEMS OUT ONCE AND FOR ALL) . CONCERNED CITIZEN

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