Parliament approves additional P1.8 billion for water projects

Project financing | Water

On Thursday Parliament of Botswana approved additional P1.8 billion for ongoing nationwide water projects.

This was requested by Minister of Finance & Economic Development Peggy Serame as part of the P2.4 billion Supplementary budget.

Over P700 million was requested under the recurrent budget for Ministry of Health & Wellness ( COVID-19) and Ministry of Defence, Justice & Security ( BDF-Mozambique).

Under the Development Budget, Minister Serame explained before parliament that the Ministry of Land Management, Water and Sanitation Services (MLWS) requires additional funds amounting to One Billion, Eight Hundred and Sixty Million, Five Hundred and Ninety Four Thousand, Five Hundred and Seven Pula (P1 860 594 507) in order to continue the implementation of the water infrastructure projects.

The approved Ministry budget allocation for financial year 2021/2022 is three billion, four hundred and one million, two hundred and seventy two thousand Pula (P3 401 272 000) and expenditure to date is at Three Billion, one hundred and Sixty-eight Million, Two Hundred and Fifty-six Thousand, Nine Hundred and Eighty-One Pula (P3 168 256 981) or 99 percent of the 2021/2022 budget.

The remaining Three Hundred and Eighty Three Million and Seven Thousand, Seven Hundred Pula (P383 007 700) is expected to be fully spent by the end December 2021, hence, this request for additional funding.

“Mr Speaker, the budget shortfall under these projects is mainly attributed to the previous years’ challenges in implementing the NDP 11 planned projects, in that a substantial proportion of the projects experienced slow progress during the first half of the Plan period.” Minister Serame explained.

Major projects such as Maun Water and Sanitation Contracts 1 & 2; NSC2.2 – Mmamashia Water Treatment Plant, and NSC 2.2 Contracts 1, 2, 3 and 4 were delayed by procurement challenges and disputes, resulting in low expenditure levels for the first three (3) years of the Plan period.

In 2020/2021 financial year, the Ministry started making significant progress in implementation of some of the major projects such as Maun Water and Sanitation Contract 1 – Construction of Water Supply Distribution Network and Sanitation Reticulation as well as Contract 2 – Development of Ground-Water source and equipping boreholes, upgrading of pump stations and treatment plants progressed to construction stage; 100km Masama-Mmamashia Water Pipeline and Mmamashia Water Treatment Plant also commenced).

Furthermore, other projects such as Maun Water and Sanitation Contract 3 – connection of pipelines to satellite villages and Goodhope Water Supply Phase 2 were delayed at award stage due to budgetary constraints.

The beneficiary villages for the Maun Water and Sanitation area include Sexaxa, Matsaudi, Sakapame, Shorobe and Komana while the Goodhope Water Supply Phase 2 will cover the villages of Tswagare, Mokgomane, Sedibeng, Mosi, Tsoaneng, Metlobo, Mogwalale, Rakhuna, Ramatlabama, Papatlo, Borobadilepe, Hebron, Phihitswana, Ditlharapa, Mokatako, Phitshane-Molopo, Leporung, Dikhukhung, Mmakgori, Tshidilamolomo, Mabule, Sekhutlhane as well as 10 settlements.

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