By JOHN SAKALA
Mulonga Water and Sanitation Company has started tariff adjustment consultative scooping meetings for the period 2020 to 2023.
The utility firm wants to increase its water tariffs for the period 2020 to 2023 to cope with prevailing economic atmosphere.
In his presentation, MWSC Director of Finance Sila Siame said the proposed minimal tariff adjustment is meant to help the utility firm meet with the growing demand for the commodity.
Mr Siame said the three towns of Chingola, Chililabombwe and Mufulira are ever expanding thereby needing plans to cope with the growing population.
He said once the tariffs are adjusted upwards, it will help in full recovery of the cost putting in mind Mulonga Water is not a profit making firm but service providing firm.
“The consumer price index is increasing at a sharp rate from 211.52 to 231.27, the Bank of Zambia base rate at the moment is at 10.25 per cent, Zesco has already hiked power by 75 per cent with another looming increase.
“Once the tariffs adjustment proposal has been approved by National Water and Sanitation Council (NWASCO), we will embark on developmental projects with a view to increase coverage both in water and sanitation. We plan to be spending K180 million annually. Energy to pump water will be costing us 10 per cent of K180m, operations costs, maintenance and wages will get 55 per cent of K180m and chemicals which mostly are imported will gobble five per cent,” he said.
Mr Siame said no figure had been proposed.
He said the purpose of the meeting was to get views from the key stakeholders and present them to NWASCO for approval.
But Chingola Mayor Titus Tembo implored Mulonga Water to improve both water quality and quantity in order to justify tariff hike.
Mr Tembo said hiking tariff is not a problem but there is need for Mulonga to improve its services to the people so as to win good will of the people.
He implored the consumers to develop water preserving habits because water is the most sort after resource.
The Mayor called on residents to help the utility firm in guarding the infrastructure from vandals.
He said some water and sanitation disruptions are due to vandalism of the water and sanitation network.