NamWater connects new boreholes forAus residents

Abraham Nehemia

The Namibia Water Corporation (NamWater) has connected a new borehole at Aus in the //Kharas region to alleviate water shortages faced by residents at the settlement.

Since October 2022, residents of Aus have been without water for two to three days every two weeks due to the reservoir having run dry after the underground water table fell below 40% capacity.

NamWater chief executive Abraham Nehemia said a new borehole was drilled last year which is able to yield about 40 cubic litres of water per day.

He said a contractor was appointed to establish the infrastructure and connect the borehole to the reservoir.

“This is a short-term solution to ensure water provision for the next two to three years,” said Nehemia.

He added that NamWater is working on a long-term solution to draw water from the Koichab Pan that provides water to the Lüderitz community, with plans to add a desalination plant to draw water from the Atlantic Ocean.

Nehemia said even though it is currently rainy season, Aus’ topography is too rocky and the top soil structure consists of silt, which does not allow rain water to be absorbed into the ground to fill the underground water table.

“So, to make sure we provide water sustainably, we will continue doing some geological surveying to locate more water sources in the vicinity of the Aus settlement to drill more boreholes,” Nehemia said.

!Nami≠Nüs constituency councillor Susan Ndjaleka described the connection of the new boreholes as a good move in the short to medium term, to ensure sustainable potable water provision for the community.

“The water shortages at Aus were very critical. Out of the 15 boreholes supplying the settlement with water, five have run dry and the pumps of two boreholes were broken. With these boreholes now getting connected, residents can look forward to having sufficient water for businesses, animals and household needs,” said Ndjaleka.

Last year, due to the critical nature of the situation, political leaders, business people, community members, church leaders, the Directorate of Rural Water Supply, NamWater and representatives from the regional council met to map the way forward to address the challenge, of which one of the outcomes was the new borehole.

At the time, residents were urged to collect water in containers for household use for the days when there was no water in the reservoir.

They were also given multiple water saving tips to ensure they survived with the reduced amounts of water.

Farmers were instructed to use separate boreholes to provide water for their animals, by setting up their own pumps solar power.

The 15 boreholes supplying the settlement are not sufficient to provide water to feed livestock around the settlement as well.

Aus village chief executive Queeny Koopman said residents will still have to wait for about a week to feel the impact of the new connected borehole.

“Yes, the borehole was connected to the reservoir, however, it must still be commissioned before it can be used and the residents can feel its impact,” said Koopman.

Aus is situated about 215km south west of Keetmanshoop.

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