Radar | Jul 01,2023
Oromia Regional State has launched the construction of six water projects that will provide potable water to 164,543 people at a cost of 900 million Br.
Beqojji in Arsi, Doba and Kara Korkora in West Hararge, Bote in East Shewa, Moxe in East Wellega and Harbu Chulule in southwesern Shewa are the projects underway by Oromia Water & Energy Bureau. Expected to create 200 jobs, the project is scheduled to be completed in the coming two years.
Oromia Water Works Construction Enterprise, which netted 1.3 billion Br in profit in the last fiscal year, is responsible for the construction of the project. Oromia Water Works Design & Supervision Enterprise, a firm established in 2006 to undertake the design of medium to mega-scale development projects, will supervise the construction.
The projects are targeted to improve the water coverage of the Regional State, according to Gurmessa Oljira, director of contract administration and construction at the Bureau, which expects the projects to increase the water coverage of the region by three percentage points to 69pc.
"Previously, the towns were getting their water supply from the existing old water line," said Gurmessa, "and the new water projects will solve the shortage of water fully."
The Beqoji Arsi project has a 394 million Br project cost and is expected to benefit 50,161 residents in the area. The project will have two boreholes with a capacity of providing 104lt of water a second.
Doba, with an 81 million Br project cost, will give 17,000 people access to water with a borehole that has a capacity of providing 17lt of water a second.
The third project, Kara Korkora in West Hararge, is expected to consume 81 million Br to provide 10,751 people with pure water. It will have two boreholes that can provide 55.3lt of water a second. Bote in East Shewa will be built for 107 million Br to benefit 15,000 people.
The Moxe and Harbu Chulule water projects are expected to benefit 11,028 and 10,442 people and will cost 175 million Br and 43.7 million Br, respectively. Moxe water project will have two boreholes and a capacity of providing 17lt of water a second, while Harbu Chulule's two boreholes will provide 33lt of water a second.
Demarcation was the main challenge we faced during the planning of the construction, according to Leliso Edoshe, director of contract administration and design evaluation at Oromia Water Works Construction Enterprise, which has 1,200 employees and 20 ongoing projects.
The Regional State has 437 ongoing water projects, of which 83 are constructed by the regional Water & Energy Bureau, while the weredawater bureaus are responsible for building the remaining 354 projects. Out of all ongoing projects, 201 water projects are planned to be completed in this fiscal year, benefiting 1.9 million people.
Water coverage at the Oromia Regional State currently sits at 66.1pc and is expected to grow to 74pc by the end of this fiscal year, while the coverage at a national level was 71pc in the last fiscal year.
In the second edition of the Growth & Transformation Plan (GTP II), the government plans to increase access to water in urban and rural areas to 75pc and 85pc, respectively. Access is defined as being able to find 25lt of water each day within a one-kilometre distance in rural areas and at least 40lt of water within a 250m distance in urban areas.
Sirak Robele (PhD), an associate professor at Addis Abeba University's Institute of Water Resources, fears that the project will not be completed in the proposed time owing to the poor project management culture of the country.
To complete the projects in the planned time frame, the consultant should conduct a close and strict follow-up, according to Sirak.
"The completion of the potable water projects will attract investment to the region," he added.
PUBLISHED ON Oct 19,2019 [ VOL 20 , NO 1016]
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