Dar es Salaam. The government has clarified the recent reports that companies, institutions and individuals that drill bore holes are supposed to first obtain permits and pay fees before undertaking such a move.
The government issued the clarifications after the Wami/Ruvu River Basin Office announced that it would sue 100 companies and hotels for drilling bore holes without first obtaining its permission and paying the required fees.
This move sent shock waves to the public causing hundreds to flock to the Wami-Ruvu Basin Office to get clarifications on what was expected of them.
The announcement also caused a hot debate among citizens, particularly among individuals who had drilled the bore holes meet their domestic water needs.
Elaborating, Ministry of Water and Irrigation permanent secretry Kitila Mkumbo said the citizens who drill wells of less than 15 metres in depth, would neither be required to pay the fees nor obtain government permits for the wells.
“Owners of drilled wells used for domestic activities will not be required to pay the charges,” he said.
He added “I think the Wami/Ruvu Basin Office were misquoted. But we will continue to educate the public about the matter.”
Prof Mkumbo further said only citizens who drill wells for industrial use and commercial purposes would be required to pay the charges including those who sell water in streets.
In another development, Prof Mkumbo said the government contemplated to raise sufficient funds amounting to Sh700 billion for improving water service coverage in the country by 2035.
“We are thinking of establishing other sources of water to meet the increasing demand of the precious liquid especially in the cities overwhelmed with high population like Dar es Salaam,” he said.
For his part, Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner Paul Makonda admitted that some parts of the city were still experiencing acute shortages of water.
These include Kigamboni, Temeke, Chanika, Kifuru and Gongolamboto.
“I’m optimistic that the completion of the ongoing mega water projects, the water crisis in the country will become history,” he said.