River Kafu degradation frustrates water supply plans in Hoima Oil City

Hoima District leaders move to inspect the state of River Kafu in Buhanika Sub-county

As Hoima city grows day-by-day driven by its tag of ‘oil city’, the National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) Hoima Area, is concerned about the degradation of River Kafu some 12 kilometres away.

River Kafu is currently the only reliable option for water abstraction to meet the growing demand for water service in Hoima city after the Lake Albert and Lake Kiyanja in Masindi options proved to be costly.

In an interview with Kazi-njema News, Nelson Nsabimaana, the NWSC Hoima Area Engineer said natural water sources are badly needed to ensure sustainable water supply.

He warns that even their current ground water sources of Bigaajuka and Kiribanywa rivers will dry up and render their boreholes useless if the swamps that recharge those rivers are not conserved.

Audio: Nsabimaana on River Kafu (English)

Eng Nsabimaana speaks as River Kafu is facing serious degradation by aggressive migrants from different parts of the country and beyond.

Water aeration takes place at the Kyarwabuyamba water treatment plant in Hoima Oil City.

Migrants from Busoga, Rwanda, West Nile and Kigezi have been spotted by local leaders engaging in charcoal burning and cultivation on the hard to access parts of the river banks.

Mr Chiche Benson Rukumba, the Hoima District Councillor for Buhanika Sub-county says the district is working with Kyankwanzi district to have a synchronised management of the shared natural water source.

Wagesa, Kasambya, Katereiga and Kaayera are the most degraded parts of River Kafu in Buhanika sub-county.

Audio: Rukumba on River Kafu (English)

The 180-kilometre River Kafu has its source in Kitooma Swamp in Greater Kibaale and its mouth in Victoria Nile River 12 kilomtres from Masindi Port.

Its degradation definitely affects Lake Kyoga, Lake Albert and all the districts of Hoima, Kyankwanzi, Kagadi, Kakumiro, Kiryandongo and Masindi among others.

River Kafu degradation started in the past four years.

During his visit to Hoima in 2019 Eng Dr Silver Mugisha, the NWSC Executive Director, said the Corporation was willing to cooperate with any willing stakeholders to restore the degraded wetlands and catchment areas.

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