Tanzania to up water supply by building key dams

Friday May 13 2022
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One of the 18 dams built in Terati, Arusha. In order to to increase the supply of safe and clean water across the country the government will focus on the construction of major strategic dams in 2022/23 budget

By Gadiosa Lamtey

Dar es Salaam. The Ministry of Water will focus on the construction of major strategic dams during the next financial year so as to increase the supply of safe and clean water across the country.

Requesting Parliament to endorse a total of Sh709.6 billion for his docket for the financial year 2022/23, Water minister Juma Aweso said some of the strategic dams to be constructed include Kidunda, Farkwa, Lugoda and Songwe. The requested amount is Sh29.3 billion more than that of the current fiscal year, Sh680.3 billion, that will end on June 30.

Along with the larger strategic dams, the government also plans to construct 23 medium-sized dams, especially in semi-arid areas for rainwater harvesting. This is meant to increase the country’s ability to store water and distribute it to more people.

He said it will begin with the construction of the Kidunda and Farkwa dams and water treatment plants after obtaining a loan of $125.3 million (about Sh280 billion) from the African Development Bank (AfDB).

Out of the money, Sh657.899 billion will be spent as development projects while the remaining will be for the recurrent expenditure and other costs.

Some 381 new projects worth a total of Sh95.1 billion will also be executed in rural areas across the country.

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This is part of a total of 1,029 projects, valued at Sh304.899 billion that will be implemented during the coming year, Mr Aweso said. Likewise, it plans to implement a total of 175 urban water projects.

“The country is blessed to have many water sources including lakes, rivers, springs and groundwater but some areas experience severe shortages of water due to resource shortages and climate change and as a result, there are areas where they could not delivered water service,” he said.

He said the government will also put emphasis on the management of water quality by strengthening monitoring in sources and distribution networks. It will collect and examine 15,000 water samples and 2,000 samples of sewage.

He said to ensure citizens along lakes shores have access to clean, safe and adequate water, the government plans to start construction of water projects in 48 villages around Lake Victoria and 37 villages on the shores of Lake Tanganyika.

The parliamentary committee on Agriculture, Livestock and Water advised the government to speed up implementation of the prepaid system to address inconveniences suffered by citizens due to unreasonable and unrealistic water bills slapped on them.

Tabling committee’s views, chairperson Christine Ishengoma said the government started the implementation of the Lake Victoria Water Supply Project to address the challenge of access to clean and safe water in Dodoma City.

“The government should ensure that the funds approved for the implementation of strategic development projects are available and should also increase efforts to educate the public to use the procedure for harvesting rainwater during the rainy season in order to help them in the summer,” she said.