Lilongwe water board (LWB) says it is spending about K155 million per month to treat water at its Area 3 plant due to heavy siltation in Lilongwe River.
LWB chief executive officer Alfonso Chikuni said in an interview the board is spending the money to ensure that is treated to the expected standards.
“We are engaging stakeholders including parliamentarians so that they appreciate the challenges we are facing. We also want to engage those constructing along the river banks to stop the malpractice,” he said.
On Tuesday, LWB officials took some legislators to visit Likuni and Chinsapo to appreciate the magnitude of the encroachment.
In an interview ,legal affairs committee of parliament chairperson Maxwell Thyolera and his Agriculture committee counterpart Joseph Chidanti Malunga warned that Lilongwe River may dry in the next five years if its catchment area is not properly looked after .
“What we have seen here is sad .There is poor sanitation in the catchment areas where Lilongwe Water Board gets its water. What we have learnt is that there is need to leave 200 meters of the catchment area intact but houses are being belt 10 yards away from the river,” Thyolera said.
Malunga said increased siltation affects water quality and eventually LWB would not be able to adequately treat water.
“We have seen people throwing diapers everywhere and septic tanks being constructed just close to the river so that they empty faecal matter in the river. This is putting the lives of the residents at risk, he said.
Malunga indicated that his committee will soon call officials from the ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Lilongwe District Council and other stakeholders to get to the bottom of the issue.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :