The National Water Resources Authority (NWRA) has urged institutions and individuals to declare boreholes which were drilled illegally before November 24, 2023.
Addressing the media soon after holding a meeting with Lilongwe District Executive Committee on the same on Friday, NWRA public Relations officer Masozi Kasambala said after the declaration, the authority will determine on the next step after full assessment.
“The National Water Resources authority issued an ultimatum that expires on November 24 this year, that all individuals and institutions that have got illegal supply systems, such as illegal borehores must declare the same with authority for NWRA to make an assessment before deciding whether to issue a license or to seal them off”. Said Kasambala.
This exercise is quite imperative because number one, it means as a nation we are having sanity in water sector,” he added.
Kasambala said there is need to for the country to follow the law because the Act says that nobody must drill or construct a borehole without the knowledge of the authority.
“At the same time, there will be an assurance that people are having access to all sort of acceptable standards as you are aware that once the authorities are involved, will make sure that there is water quality test, implying that if we a particular borehole shows poor water quality it means that one has to be either sealed off or else mechanism must be put in place to make sure that the kind of water that the citizens do access is of acceptable standards. So this is a very, very important exercise, ” he said.
He said NWRA has received positive response on the matter saying a lot of people have come forward to declare.
The Public Relations officer said under laws of Malawi powers and Functions of the NWRA is to develop principles, guidelines and permits for water use as well as creating procedures for the allocation of water resources.
NRWA is also mandated to receive and determine applications for as well as monitor and enforce conditions attached to permits for water use.
Lilongwe district Chief Environment officer, Boniface Chimwaza has since commended NWRA for coming and work with the District Council.
“We appreciate it and we feel honoured. They should feel welcome to conserve Water. The resource has always been taken as the free for all and accessible by everyone and that has put the water under a lot of pressure, it has been very much abused and we see the coming up of the National Water Resources authority as a great relief, ” he said.
Chimwaza said as the council, they are happy that they have put in place measures to make sure that access to water is regulated and that the coming in of NWRA is going to improve access to water in a well regulated manner.