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Paying more for water which is not there

Paying more for water which is not there

As always, such hikes have been pegged to the ‘everrising production costs’ tag, which might -- on the surface -- seem right if they are justified, partly as a result of the heavy investment on the utilities. Yet, one might not be wrong to question the rationale behind the hikes in the present situation in which the flow of the so-called precious commodity in most water taps or collection centres around Dar es Salaam is far from being satisfactory.

A survey would no doubt reveal that it is only a few places in the city and elsewhere in the country where people enjoy ‘regular’ water supply 24 hours a day. The quote is ours as even in those neighbourhoods believed to enjoy good water supply, the flow isn’t so regular.

It is erratic, to say the least. The water supply system in Dar es Salaam and other regions is so blotted with frequent breakdowns and subsequent interruptions that users have every reason to be dismayed over any move to increase water consumption rates. Water consumers are already burdened with other expenses, including paying for the already high electricity and fuel bills.

It would, therefore, be unfair to add more to their burden, especially when such hikes come very close apart. EWURA would do users of the various utilities under its jurisdiction much good if it would heed to the advice of its consumer consultative council by exercising some restraint prior to effecting cost hikes.

And in any case, any hike in utility charges must consider the purchasing power of the people in addition to ensuring that consumers get real value for their money. It is also at folly’s height to make consumers pay more without first ensuring better services, in this case, smooth supply. The utility firms are further advised to look into their own houses and put them in order. They should not pass the burden of the costs of operating their institutions to the consumers.

 

Transparency is the way forward

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Author: EDITOR

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