For years on end, Matshiya villagers in Lupane Ward 1 have suffered the adverse effects of water shortages as they do not have adequate nearby water sources. As a result, villagers have taken a step towards constructing a dam that will ease the burden of walking long distances to access clean water.
Villagers have been travelling long distances of nearly 5 km to access water and the coronavirus induced lockdown has further worsened the situation as villagers fear contracting the virus at overcrowded water points.
Mrs. Ncube, from Ward 1 in Matshiya village highlighted that the need for water has pushed them to construct a dam.
“We decided to build this dam because we realised that we have a big problem of water shortages which might cause illnesses,” said Ncube. “More than 50 people gather at water fetching points yet gatherings of more than 50 people are prohibited.”
Mr Obert Moyo, said women and children are hardest hit by water shortages as they are the ones who have to endure the burden of fetching water at distant places.
“Women and children usually go to fetch water and as they are in those lines, their lives are in danger and risk exposing the whole village to the virus,” he said.
The villagers lamented lack of resources to finish their project, and called upon well-wishers to assist them with completing the construction of the dam.
As the water crisis hits rural dwellers, urban inhabitants have not been spared, due to water shedding schemes introduced by local authorities to control the use of the scarce precious liquid. This however, endangers the lives of the people as practicing proper hygiene might prove difficult, given the water woes prevailing in the urban and rural areas.
Matshiya villagers are pleading with the government, well wishers and other stakeholders, to pitch in with financial assistance and building materials to facilitate the construction of the dam.
Source: Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD)