Monday, 28th. September, 2020 – About 7000 people whose livelihood is dependent on the Magoye river in Ithebe village, Chief Mwanachingwala’s area in Mazabuka District, have severerly been affected by the drying up of the River.
Water Development Sanitation and Environmental Protection Minister, Jonas Chanda who was accompanied by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Zambia Country Director, Nachilala Nkombo, and Mazabuka District Commissioner, Jane Chirwa, inspected the dried up river which has resulted in people and livestock lacking drinking water, and the disappearance of fishing and farming activities. There is also severe flooding during the rain season due to siltated sand blocking water flow.
Dr. Chanda has explained that illegal human activities on the Magoye and other rivers and water bodies across the country need urgent protecion through a Statutory Instrument (SI) based on the Water Resources Management Authority Act of 2011.
He says this is why he has directed the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA), to urgently review all water permits on rivers, dams and water bodies across the country to prevent over-abstraction of water, and ensure equitable access to water for all.
The Minister says the Ministry of Infrastructure and Zambia National Service will be engaged on possibilities of sending a dredger to the district in order to address sand siltation on the river.
Meanwhile, Mazabuka District Commissioner, Jane Chirwa says her office has partnered with Solidaridad to look at all the natural resources in the district, specifically to ensure that the Magoye River reverts to serving life.
Speaking during the same tour, WWF Zambia Country Director, Nachilala Nkombo has pledged her organization’s support to ensure that programmes by the Ministry, aimed at protecting water resources are achieved.
And Live Makala, who is Ithebe Village Headman has expressed gratitude that President Edgar Lungu has sent Dr. Chanda to check on the dried-up state of the Magoye river and severe water shortages people are facing.
Public Relations Officer