Rehoboth taps run dry

24 Aug 2016 17:20pm
REHOBOTH, 24 AUG (NAMPA) – The Namibia water utility, Namwater on Wednesday cut water supply to the town of Rehoboth over unpaid monies owed to it.
The water was cut at 08h00 after the Rehoboth Town Council (RTC) failed to pay N.dollars 8 million to Namwater within the stipulated 24h00 hour period stipulated in a notice sent last week.
The Town Council is alleged to owe Namwater, the bulk supplier of water in Namibia, a staggering N.dollars 22 million.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Rehoboth Town Council, Chris |Uirab on Tuesday confirmed receipt of the notification from Namwater for the then pending water supply cut-off when contacted by Nampa.
According to |Uirab, a special council meeting was held on Monday whereby it was agreed to negotiate with Namwater to pay a N.dollars 8 million part payment as stipulated by Namwater by Wednesday morning to avoid the water supply being disconnected.
The town council however failed to meet the deadline and the taps went dry on Wednesday morning.
Some disgruntled residents of Rehoboth demanded the immediate removal of the entire town council staff.
A 56-year-old pensioner, Sheila Louw, who receives a disability grant, said she is very disappointed with the RTC.
“I am a pensioner with asthma paying my water bill every month, yet RTC don’t pay Namwater. RTC should pull up their socks and pay their debt” she fumed.
Another unhappy resident in the Kavukiland location, Petties Von Broen also spoke out against the alleged maladministration at RTC.
“I wonder what happens with our water money. I don’t blame Namwater at all. Why can’t the RTC keep their books up to date to avoid this type of a thing? Today it is water and tomorrow it will be NamPower, who will cut the electricity.
“If we are in arrears with as little as N.dollars 600 they will come running and disconnect the water at our homes. No man, RTC should do things properly,” Von Broen charged.
When Nampa visited the Rehoboth Block E old age home in the Block E residential area at 12h00, a 200-litre water tank was put up for the consumption.
The Caretaker at the old age home, Martha Noabes said Namwater put up the tank on Tuesday afternoon.
“Namwater put up the tank yesterday afternoon at around 15h00 saying the water will be cut on Wednesday. It is an unfortunate situation going on here. Some people here have special needs and we need water to help them.
“What if Namwater didn’t put up this tank here, what would have happened with these old people?” she asked.
When contacted for comment at 14h00 on Wednesday on when the water will be reconnected to the town, Public Relations Officer Jeffrey Kasupi said he is booked off and at home.
He said he will inform this news agency as soon as he hear anything.
“I am still in the dark on decisions taken by the management and Namwater. As soon as I am informed I will call you,” Kasupi said.
The mobile phone and office landline of the RTC CEO went unanswered on Wednesday.
When Nampa visited his office at 14h30 on Wednesday, his office assistant said he had travelled to Windhoek to sort out the water mess with Namwater.
The Corporate Communications Manager of Namwater, Johannes Shigwedha couldn’t be reached for comment as both his office line and mobile phone went unanswered.