Masvingo misses own deadline on polluting sewage pumpstation

Moses Ziyambi

For the Umpteenth time, City of Masvingo has failed to meet its own deadlines to repair the ramshackle Rujeko Sewer Pumpstation which has over the years made massive contributions to the pollution getting into Shakashe River.

The pumpstation has never really worked since early 2021, with council management repeatedly making empty promises of its repair and maintenance.

In mid-2021, council purchased repair parts but returned them to the supplier after finding out that they were wrong.

Following a massive discharge of raw sewage into Mucheke and Shakashe Rivers which resulted in the death of several fish downstream on May 22, council put out as notice the following day, promising that it was rectifying the situation.

The local authority blamed the mishap on the non-functional pumpstation as well as on “blocked sewer main lines in Mucheke A and Rujeko B as a result of vandalism. Big boulders were deposited in manholes thereby chocking sewer lines.”

In the statement, the council also claimed that its engineers were working to repair the pumpstation, promising that repairs would be complete by May 26.

However, during a full council meeting on May 30, Town Clerk Edward Mukaratirwa said the engineers were still working.

Responding from a question from Mayor Collen Maboke, Mukaratirwa said engineers were still working on the pumpstation.

The previous day, EnviroPress had visited the pumpstation and there was nobody at the place, with raw sewage delivered by the main line crashing into the pond and flowing out into Shakashe River through the open outlet.

Under normal circumstances, the raw sewage is pumped against gradient to a treatment plant in Eastvale, which is just over a kilometre away.

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