It was yet another busy schedule for Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development Minister, Kondwani Nankhumwa, on Thursday, September 20 2019 as from 9am, he toured two strategic establishments related to his ministry, Blantyre Water Board (BWB) and the Smallholder Farmers Fertilizer Revolving Fund of Malawi (SFFRFM) headquarters in Blantyre.
Minister Nankhumwa inspected works under the BWB Likhubula River (Mulanje Mountain) water project. He toured the Losa Pipeline Site and Nguludi Water Treatment Plant.
Nankhumwa told reporters after the tour that the Mulanje Water Project is the “brainchild of President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika”.
He said:“From time immemorial, we have had water challenges in the City of Blantyre; President Mutharika, through government, made a decision to explore means to bring additional water to the residents of Blantyre and a total of US$22 million dollars has been invested in this project where water is being fetched from Mulanje Mountain and channeled all the way to the City of Blantyre.”
Nankhumwa added 300 000 residents in Blantyre are set to benefit from this project in its initial phase.
He said in the long run water challenges shall be the thing of the past in Blantyre.
BWB officials and contractors on site assured the minister that the project would be completed by the end of this September.
“This means anytime in October, we would be officially commissioning this project and that the people of Blantyre would start enjoying the water from Mulanje Mountain through this extremely important project,” said the minister.
Nankhumwa said that the Mulanje Mountain project was not the only intervention by the DPP government to provide potable water to all Malawians, explaining that there are various interventions in place to ensure that Malawians have access to safe drinking water.
“If you have been following deliberations in Parliament, especially the last sitting, government has brought to Parliament a good number of Bills aimed at bringing safe water to many parts of the country, including in Lilongwe and other districts.
“With the support from local and international development partners, we are leaving no stone unturned. I can assure Malawians that we shall decisively deal with the water shortage problems not only in urban areas but in rural communities as well,” said the minister.
BWB CEO, Engineer Daniel Chaweza said to meet the existing water demand, BWB sought from the Government of Malawi to urgently implement other sources of water to bridge the demand gap.
“The Board requires an additional 22, 000 millimeters of water a day in order to efficiently and effectively meet its customers’ needs in the next five years
“The board, therefore, designed the development of a surface water source from Likhubula River in Mulanje. This source of water is estimated to produce a maximum of 20, 000 milliliters a day,” he said.
The Government of Malawi secured financing through Line of Credit (LOC) from the Government of India to finance this project.
Upon completion, the project will provide additional 20, 000 cubic meters of water per day to the water supply system and thus bridging the water demand gap. Demand is currently estimated at 123, 000 cubic meters a day as opposed to the current total production of 101, 000 cubic meters per day, according to BWB.
Earlier, in the morning, Nankhumwa toured the Smallholder Farmers Fertilizer Revolving Fund of Malawi (SFFRFM) and its Chirimba Depot in Blantyre to determine SFFRFM’s level of preparedness ahead of the farming season.
SFFRFM is one of the major Malawian companies engaged annually to supply fertilizers to smallholder farmers under the government-sponsored Fertilizer and Inputs Subsidy Program (FISP).Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :