National Dams full and spilling…

Zimbabwe

Patience Nhamburo

MORE than half of the country’s major dams are now full and spilling following the rains that the country has been receiving.

Most dams in Matabeleland, Masvingo, Midlands and Manicaland Provinces are spilling while the rest are also on the verge of filling up. The country has received substantial rains since the beginning of the rainy season at the end of October 2020, in a development that boosts water security for both irrigation and domestic needs, the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) has said.

According to latest data, as of January 21, 2021, the proportion of the spilling dams had risen to 50.3% up from 47% on January 14, 2021. The filling up of the dams has since pushed the national dam level average to 75.4% as at January 22, 2021, which has already surpassed the national dam level average of 49.2% recorded during the same week last year. The current dam level average is also way above the average of 64.2% normally expected during this period of the year. For the first time, the country’s largest inland water body, Tugwi-Mukosi is now over 95% full and expected to spill in the coming few days.

ZINWA Corporate Communications and Marketing Manager Marjorie Munyonga said, “Gwayi-Catchment has a dam level average of 99.6%, Manyame Catchment 65.2%, Mazowe Catchment 49.3%, Runde Catchment 79.3%, Sanyati Catchment 106.9% and Save Catchment 65.4%”.

Major dams that have since passed the 100% mark and are spilling include the Gweru Water Supply Dams of Gwenoro, Whitewaters and Amapongokwe.

Other major dams that are now either full or spilling include the recently commissioned Marovanyati Dam, Zhovhe Dam, Ngwenya Dam, Pollards, Sebakwe, Claw, Exchange, Bubi-Lupane, Lower Mguza, Insukamini, Silalabuhwa, Bangala, Mundi-Mataga, Upper Insiza, Padre’s Pool, Muzhwi and Bangazaan.

Munyonga added, “The Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA), as mandated by Section 5 of the ZINWA Act, to minimise the impact of floods, droughts and other hazards, has since put in place a floods response committee to help come up with ways to mitigate the impact of floods to human life and property. The Authority is also working with other arms of Government involved in disaster response to create the relevant awareness and alertness among communities downstream of the dams.”