Makilindeni Trading Centre Overcomes Water Scarcity with M'mbelwa District Council's Help
Thanks to the M'mbelwa District Council's initiative, a solar-powered water pump and a water tank valued at K22 million have been installed in the village.
Mzimba South, Malawi - For the residents of Makilindeni trading centre in Traditional Authority Kampingo Sibande, access to clean water has long been a struggle, but now they have reason to smile, writes Alinafe Sambo.
Thanks to the M'mbelwa District Council's initiative, a solar-powered water pump and a water tank valued at K22 million have been installed in the village, transforming the lives of approximately 3,000 households in the area.
"Our early morning treks to faraway places to fetch water are over now. We now have water in the confines of our homes," said Andrew Banda, a 19-year-old youth from the area.
Even Beatrice Chirwa of the area of village headman Bayani Mnyenyembe in Traditional Authority Kampingo Sibande in Mzimba South recalls with bitterness how long distances to the nearest water fetching point—6 kilometres away—used to haunt her and fellow women in the village.
"We would wake up at 5 a.m. to go to the nearest water point to fetch water, only to come back around 9 a.m. While you would wake up as early as 5 thinking you would be back in good time, you ended up disappointed when you met a whole crowd queueing for the same water from an unprotected well," she explained.
According to Chirwa, the water challenges would also lead to poor performance among learners as they would spend alot of time at the water wells instead of going to school.
"Children were being sent back from school for reporting late because, as parents, we would ask our children to accompany us to the well to fetch water, so by the time they came back to prepare for classes, it was already past time for going to school. We were even late in going to our gardens as we would spend a lot of time looking for water," she added.
Chirwa says however, that the M`mbelwa district council has installed a 10,000-liter water tank, which has changed the lives of hundreds of people.
“The installation of the water pumps by the M`mbelwa district counsel has helped me a lot. My life has changed and my children will also be attending classes on time," she said.
Wezzi Magombo, who is the vice chair for the committee that manages the water in the area, says the installation will reduce different cases that woman was facing when they go to fetc water.
“Communities now enjoy easy access to portable water. The M’mbelwa district council, has used funds generated from the Governance to Enable Service Delivery (GESD) to install this 10,000 litres water tank. Water problems are not a thing of the past," Magombo explained.
Elias Mnyenyembe said he remembers his children being sent back to Kajolwe Primary school for reporting to school late.
‘‘My children no longer need to accompany their mother to fetch water. We now have clean water right on our doorstep," said Mnyenyembe.
Public relations officer at M’mbelwa District Council, Joel Phiri said water problems that had become associated with life for communities at Makilindeni Trading Centre in the village of Bayani Mnyenyenyembe and other surrounding areas has become an old tale.
‘‘As a council, we noted the problems of water accessibility the communities at Makilindeni and other surrounding areas were facing and we decided to act to end their water woes hence the installation of the solar powered water pump and tank. We are glad that the communities now have easy access to potable water with the coming of the piped water”. explained phiri.
He said the installation of solar powered water pump and tank are some of the projects being implemented with funding from GESD.
‘‘The council has pumped in K22 Million into this project. We feel happy to note people have bid bye to water challenges they were experiencing before due to distances to water sources,” said Phiri.