7 Million People Have No Access to Clean Water in Mw-Ministry
As Malawi joined the rest of World in Commemorating World Water Day which falls on March 22nd annually, murky facts emerged on levels of accessibility of clean water among the population.
Official statistics from Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry indicate that 67 percent of Malawians which is roughly 13 million people have access to safe and potable water leaving out approximately 7 Million Malawians, which is 33 percent of the population, turn to unsafe water sources.
While some might think urban dwellers have an upper hand in as far as safe and potable water is concerned, our findings indicate that the situation is not any better.
A visit to Mtsiliza and Mtandire townships and found people drawing water from Lingadzi River.
Their argument remains water is exorbitant for an ordinary Malawian.
“We cannot afford to pay 70 kwacha per bucket hence resorting to the river,” told us Yamikani Charles who was drawing water from the river.
For Eliza Ubale, the reason is not any different, water is so exorbitant.
“We use this water for cooking, bathing, washing. We cannot do otherwise but turn to the river where we get water at no cost” said Ubale.
But Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry, Nancy Tembo says government is not sitting idle on this.
“We are working tirelessly to have the remaining 33 percent covered with clean and potable water. Our 2030 benchmark to have all Malawians access clean water will be achieved” said Tembo
But for Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources Chairperson Werani Chilenga, the problem lies in the allocation of resources by government.
“Annually, as Members of Parliament, we are allocated 12 million kwacha for water and sanitation which is only worth drilling of four boreholes. Malawi would need 600,000 boreholes if we are to provide water to all. If you make calculations you would see that we have a long way to go,” said Chilenga.
The International Water Day was set aside in 1992.
This year the day is being commemorated under the theme ‘Valuing Water.’