The Blantyre Water Board (BWB) will from Monday next week start installing prepaid water metering system in selected townships of Blantyre to give its customers an opportunity to regulate water usage.
The roll out follows the successful review and evaluation of a pilot project which started in 2013 where 600 customers in Mudi and Naperi residential areas were migrated from postpaid to prepaid billing system.
Speaking in an interview on Tuesday, BWB public relations officer Priscilla Mateyu said 5000 customers from Nkholokosa, Chitawira, Soche East, Njamba, Chinyonga, Kanyeza, Chiwembe, New Naperi and Mudi estate will have their postpaid meters exchanged with prepaid meters in the K950 million project.
Mateyu said at the completion of the project, the board will engage in another exercise where 5 000 more prepaid meters will be installed before the end of this year.
She said: “Next year we are planning to install 7 500 more prepaid meters and probably all our 60 000 customers will be migrated to prepaid billing in a period of six years.”
In a statement, project team leader Linga Makwiza, said the prepaid meters will be pre-loaded 2 000 litres (2 cubic Metres) of water whose cost will be recovered during purchase of water credit by the customers.
Makwiza said replacement of the meter will result into a thirty- minute interruption of water supply.
He called on customers to allow BWB plumbers access meter points at the production of a valid identification from the board.
BWB customers will be able to buy prepaid water credit at the time of installation and later at BWB Limbe Zone offices.
According to Mateyu, discussions are under way to secure a 24-hour prepaid water credit selling point in Limbe for customers’ convenience.
BWB and the Northern Region Water Board were the first to embark on prepaid water billing projects in the country.