Kitwe, Zambia, hit with another water crisis

Below was an article I wrote for Open Zambia, the only independent news source in Zambia. Zambia has managed to avoid the upheaval and war of many of its post-colonial neighbours. A country with one of the largest growing populations, that is expected to triple by 2050, it is set to face increasing challenges with access to water. However a country centrally controlled by Edward Lungu, basic services such as water and education are not reaching the Zambian people. 

Open Zambia, published July 2nd 2018

” Kitwe has been hit by a water crisis with most of the township going without the commodity for the past two days.

Kitwe’s Twibukishe, Mindolo, Wusakile, Nkana West, Nkana East, Ndeke, and Chamboli are effected, as residents in particular women are forced to wake up in the early hours of the morning to go and fetch the commodity from nearby streams.

Tensions have continued to rise as residents demand urgent attention from Nkana Water and Sewerage Company, whose Public Relations Manager Bivan Saluseki has said that the erratic water supply has come as a result of low voltage at one of its distribution centres.

Zesco, the state-owned electricity company, have been informed to rectify the problem that has resulted from low voltage and efforts are being made to normalise the situation.

Engineers are reported to be on the ground at the 17th Street Distribution centre. Zesco has not yet commented on the issue.

Zesco’s power failures have forced shutdowns to the water supply in Lusaka in 2016 and again in March 2018.

This is not the first time Kitwe residents have been ravaged in a water crisis, back in November 2013 they experienced over two weeks of erratic water supply when works to rehabilitate and maintain the water system led to problems.

Yet again under-funding and poor management of state-owned utilities is affecting the lives of everyday Zambians. Water is the most basic and vital commodity, without it Zambians’ lives are at risk.”

Dictatorships and poor management, accompanied by the increasing demand and pressure on the decreasing supply of water, in Zambia and other African nations is likely to worsen the water crises across the continent. The Zambian people are connected to the true value of water for which they must go without. 

In the UK as warnings of a water crisis are alerted through the media it is time that we reestablished the value in water – knowing that we do not have to go far to collect clean water, that it is comes out of the tap. Today be thankful for the water that you use, and remember that every drop counts. Conserve it! 

Find the full article here: