Minister Launches Somarela Thothi

| June 9, 2015

Water rationing is a necessary evil that will continue for as long as supply remains scarce, says the Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Mr Kitso Mokaila.

Speaking at the Somarela Thothi launch in Gaborone on June 8, the minister said it was vital for people to change their habit and to stop wasting water before nature forces them to do so.

Somarela Thothi, which means save a drop, is a project that calls for the reduction of water loss and is being implemented in the greater Gaborone area up to the end of the year.

The project is a combination of social and technical measures for more efficient water supply, and is being implemented by the First National Bank Botswana (FNBB) Foundation, Water Utilities Corporation (WUC) and GIZ Transboundary Water Management Programme (GIZ-TWM).

Mr Mokaila said water rationing would continue even if there was enough supply to water the nation, adding that Botswana was experiencing dry dams due to factors such as low rainfall and increased usage.

“There is too much usage of water in schools, hospitals and government buildings hence the debate to change building standards,” he said, adding that the situation called for the employment of water and energy efficient systems.

Another measure for saving water, he said, was recycling waste water. Minister Mokaila said the National Water Master Plan chartered the way forward to ensuring that the country had enough water supply.

He noted that the plan was reviewed midway which led to the Integrated Water Resources Management and Water Efficiency, hence the need to address water losses.

The minister said the water loss was not only important for the government, but for everyone. Minister Mokaila also said water infrastructure needed to be replaced, and that the need to provide new infrastructure in most villages cannot be overemphasised.

He said although that would be costly for the economy, it was necessary as water was a necessary source of life. FNBB Foundation board of trustees member, Ms Dorcas Kgosietsile said despite water being critical, it was often wasted.

She said water was important to the economy especially in luring foreign direct investment, adding that rationing would compel Batswana to conserve the commodity.

Ms Kgosietsile said through the project, the country would not only save water but also funds, as it happened in South Africa where a similar project was undertaken. Water Utilities Corporation chief executive officer, Mr Leonard Nxumalo said 30 per cent of water was lost via leaks and other means.

The corporations infrastructure director, Mr Gaselemogwe Senai said their aim through the Somarela Thothi project was to reduce water loss, and that their target was 22 per cent countrywide in their three year strategy.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Governance

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