Consumer Association of Malawi (Cama) executive director John Kapito has asked all water boards in the country to fix their old piping systems if customers are to enjoy clean water.
The call comes at a time when some residents in Lilongwe have been complaining of getting dirty water from their taps a development which they say is putting their lives at risk.
Since the onset of the rains, some areas such as Chilinde, Kaliyeka, Area 36 and Area 49 New Gulliver, among others, have been getting dirty and muddy water from their taps a development which has not gone down well with the residents forcing some to take to social media to complain about the situation.
Eliot Joloza, a Chilinde resident said the problem has been going on for a while in Chilinde Township.
“The water that has been coming out from the taps at my house is sometimes dirty. This problem has been going on for a while and the board needs to do something resolve the problem,” said Joloza.
The situation, Kapito said normally happens during rainy season because of old pipes that burst and not necessarily lack of chemical application.
He said the issue of dirty water was not a Lilongwe Water Board (LWB) issue alone but all the water boards in the country need to replace their ageing water pipe system.
“The issue of dirty water is common in many towns, but what I would want to urge the water boards is to work on their piping system because muddy water is a recipe for disaster,” said Kapito.
LWB spokesperson Bright Sonani admitted in an interview that they have been receiving complaints from some of their customers that the water they are getting in some instances is dirty and sometimes salty.
“As a board we are producing clean water, fit for consumption and there is no health hazard. But maybe the problem is coming about because of underground pipe bursts and that is the reason why the cases are isolated. If a person complains we are immediately going to the area to investigate the matter and rectify the problem,” said Sonani.
On the complaints that the water is salty Sonani said the reason could be that the water has got more calcium due to heavy siltation following the onset of the rains which is washing soils into dams.
“During rainy season there are a lot of wash aways and in some instances water pipes are broken, a thing which lead to water mix up,” said Sonani. n