THERE’S an old poem that runs, “Water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink …” which should remind us how casually we tend to take this precious liquid for granted and, like everything else which tend to treat with disdain, we lose a lot of water to the seas and other water bodies.
In the seas, the water gets saline and hence unusable; in the lakes, it gets either polluted or very little of it is put to good. Yet there are technologies today which can turn saline waters to sweet, potable and drinkable liquids.
We only have to ask, or look around for possible examples around the world where best practices exist on how to harvest what we lose to the saline seas and polluted lakes.
Indeed, civilisation is full of examples of how rivers, lakes and dams have propelled human development when properly harnessed.
It’s against this backdrop that everyone should support the government directive to regional authorities across the country to initiate a special campaign that could sensitize communities to harvest rain water as the best means to curb shortages and misuse of water.
Addressing members of the Parliamentary Standing Committee for agriculture, livestock development and water, the Minister for Water and Irrigation, Engineer Gerson Lwenge, revealed government plans to construct a dam that will help harvest rain water, taking into account the effects of climate change which are leading to increased incidents of uncertain rain patterns or failed rains altogether.
Currently, being implemented by the Mwanza Urban Water and Sanitation under the auspices of Lake Victoria and Sanitation Initiatives (LV-WATSAN 11), the project includes improved water and sanitation services in Nansio, Sengerema and Geita townships.
While the direct benefits of such projects are obvious, we cannot over-emphasize the fact that reliable water supply also cuts down disease incidences in our communities.
That’s why the government puts great emphasis on both ample water supply and good, working sanitation infrastructure to complement efficient health delivery services; none can exist without the support of the other.
We do expect that authorities in these three townships, namely, Nansio, Sengerema and Geita will not just quench their thirst; they should also be working towards a clean bill of health.