The Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI), through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Paramakatoi Village Council, is in the process of constructing a reservoir which will make treated water available to that hinterland community of Region Eight.
GWI, in a statement, said this is part of its plan to guarantee access to potable water in interior regions, as it works to realise President David Granger’s vision for equity of livelihoods throughout Guyana.
As part of the MOU, GWI handed over a cheque worth $4.2M to the village council to undertake the water supply improvement project.
This project will see the villagers executing the works, under the guidance of engineers from GWI.
Managing Director of GWI, Dr Richard Van West Charles, in his address at the National Toshaos Council on Thursday evening, said the utility company is now constructing the catchment storage; installing a pumping system and distribution network, standpipes and treatment system at Paramakatoi.
He also said the utility company has started treating water which comes from six wells in Lethem, Region Nine.
In addition, GWI said the village of Mabaruma in Region One will be the beneficiary of treated water for the first time in a matter of weeks.
Furthermore, GWI said it has collaborated with the Guyana Energy Agency to capture water from the Hosororo Falls, construct a reservoir and is now in the process of completing the pump station and installing the treatment system.
GWI said it has also commenced the distribution of Jerry Can and C2 filters to a number of villages across the hinterland.
“It is a special filter which removes all of the bacteria, viruses and fungi from the water so that you can drink it immediately”, the Managing Director was quoted as saying in the release.
These filters have been installed at Kamarang Hospital, Kako Primary School, Baracara Primary School and the Mabaruma Hospital among other interior locations.
GWI has also identified a number of villages in Regions 1, 7, 8 and 9 for the installation of filters, while plans underway for the establishment of miniature laboratories throughout the hinterland so that water can be tested and the results can be shared with villagers.
According to the release, Dr. Van West Charles reiterated that it is of utmost important that schools and health facilities have access to water that is incompliance with World Health Organisation (WHO) standards.
The Managing stated that, “We are now about to complete our strategic plan and within the next four years this is our task; to ensure the population has access to potable water, which means water of a good quality in accordance with WHO standards.”
He highlighted that most interior regions use surface water but noted that in light of climate change, this cannot be their main source of water access. As a result, GWI has embarked upon drilling wells in various parts of the hinterland so as to ensure a sustainable source of water supply.
“So we want to ensure that while we have access to the water from surface sources such as creeks, rivers etc., you also will have access to water from ground source….because you know especially in Region 9 what has happened over the past year and how the drought has affected not only human consumption but also your agriculture and economic development”, Dr. Van West Charles pointed out.
He appealed to the toshaos to maintain constant contact with GWI as a means of ensuring sustainable access to water in their regions, even as he disclosed his personal contact information and that of his technical staff.