Sunday, June 26, 2011

Mpanga Site Visit

Excerpted from Mathew Amani's June 27, 2011 Progress Report:

It was Monday morning of June 20, 2011 when we started our journey from Iringa town to Mpanga village via Mikumi – Morogoro road; I was accompanied with two people from Kilolo Star well Drillers Company – (A Managing director and Driller Implementer of the company).
We faced a lots of road challenges up to point when we reached Mpanga village in Kilombero district – Morogoro Region - Tanzania, we travelled for more than 550 kilometers from Iringa town to Mpanga village but “all in all” we thanks GOD with all road challenges we arrived and done our works as the way we planned and turned back to Iringa town on Friday noon of 23 June, 2011.
Mpanga project; consists of drilling seven wells and installation of hand water pumps in drilled wells, the project is approximately to serve more than 3,500 people in and around Mpanga – Morogoro – Tanzania.
Mpanga Road

The project will improves the livelihood of Mpanga communities through provision of safe and clean drinking water.   The activities conducted in this tour were interactive and participatory drawing approaches were posed for the purpose of the sustainability of the project.  Areas were identified by the village leaders and some Community representatives; and seven points were identified and surveyed by the consultation team as follows; (Malinguja, Mchangani, Mkunja, Tumaini demonstration farm, Songambele and Kibulubuto), all areas were identified accordingly and considered the issue of distance from the well site to the community settlements.

Then we met with Village leaders and Village water committees and other representatives from the village council for the purpose of providing education about water well management, sanitation for health and formation of water bank system where by the money collected will be used for repairing and well maintenance process and it was done effectively with great success.

This project is very important for Mpanga people, and the community valued it to high level due to the problems of safe and clean water which their experiencing. The current water source which their depending is the river Mpanga, the water in this river is contaminated and not safe for human consumption, water borne and water washed diseases are common and dysentery is a leading cause of death and a main source for this illness is the river.  Mpanga River is a big river in Kilombero district and full occupied with crocodiles, People from being attacked and eaten by crocodile is a common scenario here, According to the available data from the Mpanga village office from 2009 – 2011 June, more than 20 people have been killed and eaten by crocodiles.

Children Gathering water with Crocodile Lookout

Women and children suffers more not only from limited access to safe and clean drinking water but also because of the need to carry water for overlong distance which is more than 7 – 10 Kilometers to the main source of water which is also a home of crocodiles which adds risk for their life.
As usual, I took a long walk on foot down to the river which is full of water and occupied with crocodiles so as to see the status of water used by Mpanga people and to verify the real situation.
Across the river I saw small children’s fetching water behind a bamboo tree fence which was locally made so as to protect them from being attacked by the crocodiles. When I was approaching near to the fence constructed, I got shocked when I saw children started to sprint away out of the river and screaming loudly “Crocodile” ‘Crocodile”. I saw a big crocodile with my two eyes on top of the river hunting children like animals, and according to some villager’s children from being attacked by crocodile is very common phenomena and they don’t have any other source of water than Mpanga River.

A big crocodile in Water, (2011) Children’s are fetching water behind a local constructed bamboo fence by hoping that they aren’t attacked by the crocodiles while another child with red t-shirt is observing the water movement so as to see if the crocodile’s are coming to attack them then he will alert his friends by shouting “crocodile….”so to run away.

The implementation of this project which consists drilling seven well and installation of seven hand pumps in the well which will be drilled, will be done by Kilolo Start well drillers Company, we agreed with them to starts drilling process on 04 July, 2011 and this task is approximately to be accomplished within two weeks.

Other community needs
Mpanga ward – village is surrounded by two villages; Utengule and Ngalimila, People of these villages also are suffering from the same problems like Mpanga communities, both of them are depending water from Mpanga River which is extremely contaminated due to several floods occurrences and many different uses including agriculture, washings, bathroom facilities, bathing of animals, water borne diseases, another problem is death caused by crocodile and long working hours used for fetching water. People of Utengule and Ngalimila villages are still praying to God and asking for water wells like Mpanga villagers because their suffering from water borne diseases and being attacked by crocodile’s every days.

Water resource is an important tool necessary for pushing together economic and social development. Thus, water scarcity in Mpanga is the most important environmental constraint to development, particularly in areas that face limited water in terms of quantity and quality. The major problems affecting the provision of water services in Mpanga include inadequate funding for construction of new and maintenance of existing water five wells which were drilled and installed around 1980 – 1982. Water availability is closely linked to human welfare and health by affecting nutrition status and quantity of drinking water. It also has impacts on community welfare, community worship, household labor because of the time and energy exhausted in fetching water.
Due to this problem, sanitation issue is very deprived and eruptions of water borne diseases and death caused by crocodiles’ are common phenomena.
Poorest people die every day from preventable reasons caused by inadequate water supply, lack of knowledge and sanitation services. Women and children are the main victims of the problem of water and related water problems caused by scarcity of safe and clean drinking water, People are being attacked and pass away every day by crocodiles and water borne diseases.

Mpanga water project is needed extremely so as to serve the life of our fellow human beings.
If possible for the next time we can’ as we used do’ Utengule and Ngalimila people should be considered so as to serve and improves their life prosperous of more than 7530 people through provision of safe and clean drinking water.

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