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Boreholes relieve water need at Ûiba-Ôas informal semi-precious stone market

Boreholes relieve water need at Ûiba-Ôas informal semi-precious stone market

The settlement that has sprung up around the informal Ûiba-Ôas crystal market, mostly operated by artisanal miners, had to do without running potable water for years. The need to cart water in drums on donkey carts, was relieved this week when two boreholes were commissioned by Rössing Uranium, for the use of the community.

Speaking at the official handover, Rössing Uranium’s Managing Director, Johan Coetzee, said the challenge of access to water has been a major concern in the area for many years.

“Through Rössing Uranium’s involvement via its Corporate Social Investment vehicle, the Rössing Foundation, various stakeholders were engaged in our quest to resolve the water supply challenge faced by this community,” he said.

Given the community’s long relationship with the mine, going back some eighteen years, Coetzee said they could not ignore the pressing water situation. This prompted the mine to cover the costs for the drilling of two boreholes, and the installation of pumps, pipes and a water tank.

Chairperson of the Erongo Regional Council, Hon Benitha Imbamba disclosed that there are now more than two hundred squatters around the informal market, all without access to clean drinking water. This situation has now been resolved at an expenditure of N$760,000, indicating that the per capita investment is close to N$4000 per person.

The two boreholes produce about 500 litres per hour from the two solar pumps. This adds up to about 4000 litres per day or about 20 litres per person.


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