Malawi Drought Recovery and Resilience Project (MDRRP) says it is set to construct 29 high-yielding boreholes in the Central and Southern regions to help water boards mitigate against water supply challenges.
The project’s programme manager Dixon Kampani said in an interview 13 of the boreholes would be drilled in the Central Region while 16 will be sunk in the Southern Region.
He said: “We have now engaged the contractors and we are expecting to start constructing them soon.”
The announcement comes against a background of some of the country’s water boards announcing that they would be rationing water supply due to dwindling reservoirs.
For instance, Central Region Water Board (CRWB) stated that there is a looming water crisis in seven out of the nine districts it operates in.
The board’s spokesperson Zephelino Mitumba said the board could only currently meet 60 percent of the demand, a situation that could worsen if the country did not seriously look into long-term interventions such as multipurpose dams.
However, according to Mitumba, the board has engaged MDRRP to help it construct 13 boreholes in the seven affected districts.
Currently, people in Dedza, Ntcheu, Salima, Mchinji, Nkhotakota, Ntchisi and Dowa go days on end without water supply.
In a telephone interview, Southern Region Water Board (SRWB) chief executive officer Robert Hanjahanja stated that the boreholes would contribute an additional five to 10 percent to the supply.
He said: “Currently, we are able to meet about 74 percent of the demand in the 13 districts we operate in. When the boreholes are drilled we are expecting to supply to about 80 to 85 percent.”
Malawi has five water boards, namely CRWB, SRWB, Lilongwe Water Board, Blantyre Water Board and Northern Region Water Board.