Mulanje Water Project which is to construct new water supply system from Likhubula water source on Mulanje Mountain to Blantyre supply area is facing opposition from community members under Citizens for the Protection of Mulanje Mountain (CPM)which has vowed to sabotage the Blantyre Water Board (BWB) project.
The group accused BWB of not honouring the social-responsibility agreement which entails among other things that the board should lant trees within the project’s catchment area at Chambe Basin instead of the 3 500 hectares.
“No single tree has been planted and we warn that we will not allow the project to take off based on the current situation,” said the group’s leader David Majaweta.
He warned of “total chaos” of anyone will come to the Likhubula River for the project before fulfilling the agreement.
President Peter Mutharika launched the K18 billion Likhubula Water Supply System project on November 7, 2016 which involves drawing water from Likhubula River all the way to Nguludi Turnoff in Chiradzulu where there will be a treatment plant.
They blocked the then Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development George Chaponda when he wanted to visit the water source, arguing that government should first reafforest 3 500 hectares where trees were destroyed.
The residents also wanted government to assure them that they will benefit from the project.
The project finances were secured from the Indian Line of Credit through Exim Bank with a $23.5 million (about K18 billion) line of credit to finance it of which 15 percent will be from Blantyre Water Board.
The time frame for the project is 18 months.
BWB will then supply the water to Blantyre and surrounding districts such as Chiradzulu and parts of Thyolo. The water will also benefit people from the source, Mulanje.
It is expected that the new water source at Mulanje will provide an additional 20000m3 while the one along the Shire River will produce about 120,000m3 adding to an already existing capacity of 96,000m3 from Walkers Ferry which will improve efficiency of water supply as well as sustainability of supply as the above water sources are reliable perennial rivers.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :