Botswana could use recycled water from toilets in the future
BY LAONE MOLELO
Government is considering purifying sewage water to supply the nation as the country still struggles to cope with a water shortage.
According to Minister of Land Management, Water and Sanitation Services, Prince Maele, there is a possibility that government will recycle water from ponds adding that in his official visits to countries like Israel and Namibia where they purify sewage water, water recycling is at an advanced stage. Maele said he is aware that Batswana are skeptical about using recycled water.
“It’s a concept we are toying with at the moment, and we are looking into purifying water because we have seen it in Israel and Namibia. Secondly we cannot say we will treat underground water because we do not have enough of that but we still have to psychologically prepare Batswana” said Maele.
He also said that before he drank the water in Israel, he was psychologically prepared to do so.
Meanwhile, Maele also said that the water situation across the country has significantly picked up considering how severe the water shortage was in the country, prior to cyclone Dineo.
He added that although the situation is not exactly where he would have wanted, but the improvement is visible.
Maele also said that in Gaborone which was hardest hit by the water shortage, supply has greatly improved.
“The fact of the matter is that the water levels in Botswana were bad prior to Dineo, but the improvement is there for people to see. Gaborone was at 1.7% prior to Dineo but then after the dam filled up you could see that the distribution of water in Gaborone and surrounding areas has greatly improved”said Maele.
He further said that over the years, government had not been coping with the demands but Dineo brought about a magical turnaround in fortunes.
Maele also said that although some areas still remain challenged by the water supply, some are as a result of unavailability of dams as only boreholes are available.
“It is very difficult in terms of distributing water to those places but by and large the water situation has really improved, you have heard that we have acquired a loan of P1.5 billion from the World bank, it is a loan which we intend to use to improve the water situation, to put up water infrastructure. We are going to look into hard hit areas like Boteti, Kanye, North East and some others”said Maele.
Maele further emphasized that they will drill boreholes including putting up water plants and pump stations.
“The fact of the matter is that we cannot solve the water situation in the near future, basically because Botswana is still very dry, unlike other countries. We do not have seas where we can desalinate water and give people to drink, but despite that we are looking into various options to be able to purify and possibly provide to the nation” said Maele.