Hoima chairman blames dry boreholes on environmental destruction

A woman tries to pump showing a dry borehole.

Residents of Buseruka and Kigorobya Sub-counties in Hoima District are in dire need of water after their water sources dried up.

These say they have now resorted to sharing unclean and unsafe water with wild animals from nearby swamps; putting their lives at stake.

The crisis has forced local leaders to appeal to the Ministry of Water and Environment to step in and provide them with safe water for domestic use.

The Hoima District LC 5 Chairman, Mr Kadir Kirungi, acknowledges receipt of various reports pertaining to water shortage in the two sub-counties adding that his office is awash with complaints about the water sources that have dried up in those parts of the district.

The chairman says that reports from the two sub-counties indicate that more than 100 boreholes have dried up making the residents unable to access clean water.

Although he discloses that Hoima district local government is undertaking the duty of drilling more boreholes in the affected areas and extending piped water to urban areas in the district, he casts the blame of boreholes that have dried up on wetland encroachers.

Mr Kirungi says that many people have encroached on the Hoima and Wambabya Rivers which are key water catchment areas for the retention of the water table.

The politician adds that there is need to protect the two rivers from encroachers.

He says that the fallen water table has also become expensive to government since it requires sinking boreholes much deeper to reach the water underneath than it used to be in the past.

He urges the central government to emphasise on prioritising piped water to enable the district local government provide it to areas with a bigger population.

“There was a time when the water level reduced and affected borehole drilling that required drilling much deeper compared to the past. We request government to consider providing us more with piped water to places with more population. We have received funds for drilling one big borehole in Chongambe and the surrounding LCs, we are also planning for Kibengeya and the design is already done to enable commencement of the piped water system,” Mr Kirungi reveals.

“At the same time, we have to protect the most important catchment areas like River Hoima. In conjunction with the Ministry of Water, Kigorobya and Buseruka should be considered more to get piped water than boreholes,” he adds.

Audio: Kirungi on water and environmental degradation (Runyoro/Rutooro)

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