Rwanda : Muhanga residents facing acute water shortage
With a population of 307,501 residents, only 64% of the residents in the district have access to water currently, though the district plan is to increase the numbers to 74% in the next fiscal year.
Residents in Muhanga say that the problem of lack of water supply, especially in the town center, has been existent since last year and asked local leaders to take subsequent action.
Residents say that other options of water sources, such as wells and ponds, have also dried up and most of them are distant. “This shortage of water is a very big challenge for families in the urban centers. Something must be done, otherwise we are not happy living like this in the city center” one resident said
Muhanga district Mayor, Yvonne Mutakwasuku says that this problem should have been resolved by now since the Energy, Water and Sanitation Authority (EWASA) has already replaced the old water pipes with new ones – which was the initial analysis of the cause of shortages of water due to bursting pipelines.
Mutakwasuku however acknowledged that the whole district still faces a problem of water shortages due to its geographical positioning, which is mainly hilly.
Government of Rwanda has adapted a new policy on water management and conservation as a way of having water play a major role in the country’s development. The policy was launched on March 22, 2012, at Serena Hotel, by the minister of Environment and Natural resources, Stanislas Kamanzi,
The minister said that the new policy will bring on board the government efforts to implement strategies on increasing access to water, using water sources for economic development and address issues of climate change.
Though Rwanda has plenty of water, the country needs to adopt the Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM)- which is a process that promotes the coordinated development and management of water, land and related resources, in order to maximize the resultant economic and social welfare in an equitable manner without compromising the sustainability of vital ecosystems.