Watch: Water supply to Maputo to return to normal on Wednesday
FILE: Maputo also suffered water shortages in 2017, [File photo: DW]
Officials warn that low rainfall will make restricted water supplies in the capital and other areas of southern Mozambique inevitable. Most reservoirs are currently at only 25% of their capacity.
The Mozambican authorities are expected to restrict water supplies to the country’s capital, Maputo, and other areas of southern Mozambique in the coming months. The reason is the lack of rain.
The measure “is inevitable if the current hydro-meteorological patterns persist,” Agostinho Vilanculos, head of the Watershed Management department at the Ministry of Public Works, Housing and Water Resources (MOPHRH), told Lusa news agency.
Water is at very low levels in the Pequenos Libombos, Corumana and Massingir reservoirs, all in the south of the country. Pequenos Libombos, which supplies Maputo directly, currently has only 24% of water capacity, while Corumana, an alternative source, has only 26%.
Unlimited water supply to Maputo, Matola and Boane must change, or “we could be in a very difficult situation,” Vilanculos says.
“At the end of December we will have to sit down, because forecasts indicate that we will have only normal or below normal rainfall in January and February,” he said.
Chronic shortage of rain
Rain scarcity is becoming increasingly routine in southern Mozambique, with water supply restricted to a few hours per day or being suspended on alternate days a familiar scenario.
The Corumana Dam is the very picture of scarcity. Because of consecutive years of drought since 2012, the dam, which is still under construction, has never held more than 25% of its potential capacity.
There are five river basins in southern Mozambique, but only one – the Umbeluzi river and the Pequenos Libombos dam – supplies the city of Maputo. The Corumana dam sends water to Xinavane and Marragra, but acts as an alternative source for Maputo.
Agostinho Vilanculos proposes that the Moamba-Major dam project be resurrected, being the most viable alternative water supply for the Greater Maputo region, comprising Maputo, Matola and Boane.Source: Deutsche Welle
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