WARMA LAUNCHES 2022 – 2026 STRATEGIC PLAN
Lusaka, Friday, October 28, 2022
The Water Resources Management Authority has launched its strategic plan. The strategic plan that is anchored on five strategic pillars will be implemented between 2022 to 2026 to achieve the Authority mandate.
Speaking during the launch, Ministry of Water Development and Sanitation Hon Mike Mposha pledged full support to the implementation of the Strategic Plan.
The Minister stated that the Strategic Plan charts out WARMA’s long term strategic goals for carrying out the institutions mission of regulating and managing water resources in Zambia.
The Minister noted the Strategic Plan is anchored on national and international policies and goals, including the Eighth National Development Plan (8NDP), Vision 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). He said the outcomes and targets in this Plan are consistent with national and global targets and goals.
He stated the new dawn government through the able leadership of President Hakainde Hichilema seeks to attain the Vision 2030 objective in the water sector by providing secure access to safe water sources and improved sanitation facilities to all citizens. He added that this, therefore, places the sector among the expenditure priority focus areas for the Government in the planning frameworks.
The Hon. Minister tasked WARMA and other cooperating partners such as World Wildlife Fund for nature (WWF) and GIZ to work in unison by providing government with the technical consultancy on the the encroachment of forest 27. The Minister highlighted that the Issue surrounding the encroachment on the forest is still fresh and new dealt with to ensure tha forest is preserved.
Speaking at the same event, WARMA Board Chairman Dr. John Kunda said the the country is faced with the challenge of wholly protecting the water resource from degradation and the need to use water in a more sustainable manner.
Dr. Kunda mentioned that the Plan is based on an assessment of the risks and vulnerabilities of water resources to the current and future impact of climate change. He said the evidential assesments have continued to provide additional non climate factors such as land use practises, water quality and population demands that can be seen as additional opportunities and challenges to the already stressed water resources.
The Board Chairman Futher called on all key stakeholders to act now in protecting the resource.
And WARMA Director General Engineer Kenneth Nyundu thanked Government for recognising the water Sector as a key driver to social economic development. Eng. Nyundu said the Strategic Plan will assist WARMA to have an in-depth understanding of the expectations of the general public.
Eng. Nyundu noted that through the Plan, the institution will endeavour to strengthen the level of engagement with all stakeholders without exception and assured that public that WARMA shall remain open to constructive engagement to maintain leadership in water resource planning and regulation.
ZAMBIA HEADED FOR A WATER CRISS – WARMA
Lusaka, Thursday, October 25, 2022
Reports have continued to indicate that the water resources in the country are Diminishing at an alarming rate.
An institution in charge of the management of the resource, the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) has indicated in it’s reports that Zambia is at a risk of having a water crisis in the near future due to activities that are negatively affecting the resource.
WARMA has indicated that the institution has continued to record cases indicating that resources are diminishing in most parts of the country such as Lusaka and Southern Province.
This came to light during a special radio interview on Zambezi FM where the institution Public Relations Officer Mubiana Nalwendo highlighted that the Authority is receiving numerous reports of boreholes drying an indication that the ground water table has tremendously dropped.
Mr. Nalwendo Futher highlighted that the diminishing of the resource can also be seen from the drying of many streams that are contributary to rivers such as the Zambezi and Kafue rivers.
He noted that it is worrying that the ground water table has dropped to as low as 120 meters in areas like Lusaka West a situation that cannot be compared to a few years back, when ground water in Lusaka could easily be accessed after drilling about 35-40 meters
WARMA has spoken that it has continued to engage many stakeholders such as Mining industry, the Agriculture sector and the Energy Sectors who are the major users of water in finding ways to avoid compromising the state of the water resource.
The Public Relations Officer added that despite not receiving much support from stakeholders, it is working in ensuring that the resource is preserved for now and the future generation.
He revealed that the institution has therefore consistently sent inspectors on the ground who have been working tirelessly to ensure that the resource is not encroached on by issuing stop orders to those found wanting.
WARMA has therefore continued to emphasize that rules and regulations regarding the management of water resources across the country should be strictly adhered to by all.
REVISED PERMITTING PROCESS PROGRESSIVE – CHIKANKATA FARMERS
Mazabuka, Thursday, October 6, 2022
Farmers in Chikankata District have commended the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) for reducing the water permitting process from the initial 6 months to 2 and half months. The farming community remain positive that the reduced period now allows for efficiency and effectiveness in the managing their affairs as farmers.
One farmer spoken to said farmers across the country have been experiencing challenges in obtaining water permits as the process was taking too long before hence affecting their ability to secure their investments.
Mr. Jesper Lublinkhof who is also Managing Director at Mubuyu farm in Chikankata said the long process was not only time consuming but was a costly loss because it did not allow farmers to proceed with their activities.
“The last time I applied for a water permit it took me about 4 to 6 months before I received the certificate and that delayed my farming activities as I couldn’t proceed without a permit. I am glade that today the process has been shortened to 2.5 months.” He said.
Mr. Lublinkhof expressed his appreciation to WARMA for the swift action taken and listening to the concerns of farmers who requested the process be revised.
And WARMA Board Chairman Dr. John Kunda stated that the Authority is delighted to note that farmers and other water users requiring permits are benefiting from the revised system.
The Board Chairperson explained that the reduction in the permitting time frame is not only beneficial to water users but to the Authority too as it helps WARMA to execute it’s mandate with ease and required speed.
Dr. Kunda assured Mr Lublinkhof that the Authority recognises water users as key stakeholders and their concerns are incorporated in decisions arrived at with the aim of conserving, preserving and managing of the resource. Dr. Kunda further encouraged all water users across the country to always submit their concerns to the Authority whenever need be
WARMA ASSURES CLEAN AND SAFE DRINKING WATER TO SCHOOLS AND HOSPITALS
Mansa, Wednesday, October 5, 2022
The Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) is currently carrying out ground water quality assessments in schools and clinics across the country.
The exercise is aimed at providing clean and safe drinking water to citizens especially children and the sick in hospitals.
This came to light when WARMA Director General Engineer Kenneth Nyundu appeared on KFM Radio station in Mansa Luapula Province.
Engineer Nyundu stated that his institution is working round the clock with empirical information to make sure public schools and hospitals are not exposed to contaminated water.
WARMA Director General Eng. Kenneth Nyundu has further assured water users that the WARMA is in existence with the aim of safeguarding the interests of the public. Eng. Nyundu stated that it is imperative that members of the public understand that the huge mandate of WARMA is centered around enhanced water security for Zambia.
The Director General pointed out that the Authority is consistently working to ensure that all standards are met and the right criteria is used in the management of the resource according to the ambient water quality standard.
He has noted that WARMA being a public institution will work to ensure that the interests of Zambians of having abundant water is safeguarded through regulating the finite resource.
He noted that benchmarking of WARMA’s performance against external criteria will help members of the public to monitor the Authority and the institution will be able to gauge its own performance in the management of the water resource.
Eng. Nyundu added that the mandate of WARMA is not there to frustrate water users, but it’s mandate is helping safeguard the future of the country.
ZAMBIA COMMEMORATES WORLD RIVERS DAY
Lusaka, Monday, September 26, 2022.
Zambia has joined the rest of the world in commemorating the World Rivers Day a day that is celebrated world over since 2005.
The commemoration which is being held right at the source of the Zambezi River in Ikelengi District of North-western Province, has kicked off attracting many stakeholders in the water sector who are putting a spotlight on the importance of protecting and managing rivers.
Speaking at the event Minister of Water Development and Sanitation Mike Mposha has implored all citizens to properly manage rivers as he states that rivers provide water for trees and plants where we derive food, medicine and shelter for the livelihood of humanity
In a Speech read on his behalf by Ikelengi district Member of Parliament Hon. Elijah Muchima, the minister states Zambezi is an international river that must be conserved as it has about 6 countries that directly depend on it as Anything that happens to Zambezi affects these countries too.
The hon. minister says his ministry has been making frantic efforts in ensuring that the source of the Zambezi River is properly managed and given the much recognition it deserves. He adds that the ministry is also planning to put up dams around the area to avert people from drilling borrows that might affect the source of the Zambezi River
He says the ministry is doing all this because Government has placed premium on stakeholder collaboration on the agenda of protecting water resources and environments for the benefit of the all Zambians
‘‘The Zambezi River is a backbone of systems that contribute to the socio-economic development of our country. The river supports two big hydro power production that help power the nation. The Victoria falls also is located on the Zambezi River which is the 7th wonder of the world and is the largest tourism attraction in the country.’’
Hon. Mposha says the Zambezi River supports over 1.5million people through fishing, irrigation, recreation and more therefore every well-meaning Zambian ought to ensure that the Zambezi River is well protected from the source.
The minister who bemoaned the encroachment of river banks states the Poor water management along river banks has contributed to pollution of river systems and hence glowed to extinction of some aquatic species hence leading to loss of biodiversity. Climate change has a very negative impact on the land and forests.
In addition, he assured citizens that the ministry is committed to conserving the Zambezi River source and called on local residents to guard the river source and water resources jealously.
Speaking at the same event, Her Royal Highness Chieftainess Ikelenge Muhemba II states Zambia is recognized because of the Zambezi River. She says that the chiefdom is hence worried because the world is recognizing the Victoria falls much more than the source of that water.
The Chieftainess has since called upon the New Dawn Government to ensure that the source of the Zambezi River is not neglected like it reported to have been the case in the past years.
Chieftainess Ikelenge Muhemba II states the chiefdom is concerned about the shallow wells that residents are puncturing right at the source of the Zambezi which are posing a serious threat to the source of the Zambezi River. She added that the residents are engaging in such activities because people do not have adequate water systems.
Still at the same event, Ministry of Tourism Permanent Secretary Evans Muhanga states the protection of the Zambezi River has come under threat from many factors in the recent decades, these factors have reduced forest cover and water depth in dander with the effects of climate change
The Permanent Secretary states the theme of the world tourism and world rivers day resonate very well with restoration of ecosystem, the need for effective management of the water resources to enhance the sustainability of the ecosystem around the source of Zambezi and beyond.
He mentions that Zambia has a responsibility to protect the source of the Zambezi because it supports various forms of life along the river system and much more to develop the source of the Zambezi and diversify the product portfolio so that tourists might find all amenities that are required.
AMNESTY ON ILLEGAL WATER USE EXTENDED FOR ANOTHER SIXTY DAYS
Lusaka, Wednesday, September 21, 2022.
Government through the Ministry of Water Development and Sanitation has extended the amnesty period on illegal water usage to sixty days. Minister of water development and sanitation Honourable Mike Mposha has announced.
Speaking at a press conference in Lusaka, the Honourable Minister stated that the amnesty extension has been necessitated by demand from commercial water users and members of the public.
The Minister added that the aim of the extension is to give an opportunity to all commercial water users to visit WARMA offices in their respective localities and have their water permits rectified.
‘‘Water has an economic and social value whose aspects are always reflected in its use. The water sector has therefore been immensely affected due to various illegalities being committed by some water users across the country. In order to curb this vice, my ministry is once more engaging WARMA an institution that is tasked to manage the water resource in the country to once again ensure it comes up with ways of ensuring that all water illegalities are dealt with within the confines of the law.’’ He spoke.
Setting the 21st of September 2022 as the beginning of the extension period, Hon. Mposha says he hopes that all commercial water users will correct their water permits which in turn will help in the economic development of the country at large.
He said that water plays an important role in the growth of any economy and with its economic value, water resources have a significant administrative cost element which are always reflected in the permit charges for commercial purposes.
Hon. Mposha further commended WARMA for successfully forming a Water Committee with the Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) in line with the aspirations of the ministry on enhancing stakeholder engagements with key players. He added that stakeholder engagements are important because the management of Zambia’s water resources demand a multi-sectoral approach.
Meanwhile, WARMA Director General Engineer Kenneth Nyundu has welcomed the move stating that the extension will help the Authority cover all water users who might have not had the chance to normalise their water utilisation. Eng. Nyundu has assured Government that WARMA will be proactive by visiting commercial water users to ensure they have normalised their usage of water.
The Direct General added that the extension is an opportunity for WARMA to upgrade its data base which in turn will help in providing data during the allocation of water. He clarified that individual that will not seize the sixty days extension window will have themselves to blame when punitive measures are applied.
On 11 May 2022, the Ministry gave a 90-day Amnesty to illegal water users to rectify their permits with the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA).
On the 9th August, the Amnesty period came to an end attracting a total number of One Hundred and Eighty (180) water users who rectified their illegal water permits with WARMA. Out of the total, One Hundred and Six (106) of them had surface water permit issues and Seventy-Four (74) water users corrected their groundwater permit issues.
KAMFINSA WATER POLLUTION INCIDENCE
Thursday, February 17, 2022
The Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) was actively involved in investigating the possible chemical contamination of water on Kamfinsa Stream as a result of the road traffic accident at Kamfinsa bridge, on the Ndola/Kitwe dual carriageway of the Copperbelt Province. This happened on 17th February, 2022. WARMA’s findings revealed that a truck laden with Sodium Hydroxide, plunged into Kamfinsa stream at Kamfinsa bridge, posing a risk of water contamination that may compromise the ability of the stream to support human and aquatic life.
Sodium hydroxide is a white crystalline material that readily absorbs moisture and dissolves in water and is highly corrosive. After taking water samples upstream and downstream of the accident scene, the findings were that the contamination was localized around the accident scene. The public was therefore advised to avoid using the raw water or indeed do any recreational activities along the Kamfinsa stream, at the accident scene or downstream within the vicinity. Furthermore, the Authority had established that the flood mark level at the Kamfinsa bridge was of higher elevation than the design height of the bridge. It was therefore anticipated that any further increase in rainfall activity would result in stream overflow above the bridge. Motorists using the Ndola/Kitwe Road were advised to take precautions at all times when approaching Kamfinsa bridge when it was raining.