Serengeti residents salute SBL for over 200m/- water supply project

16Jun 2021
The Guardian Reporter
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Serengeti residents salute SBL for over 200m/- water supply project

OVER 12,000 residents of Machochwe Ward in Serengeti District of Mara Region are heaving a sigh of relief after their years of struggle to get clean tap water ended recently.

Serengeti district commissioner, Nurdin Babu assists a resident of Machochwe in the district, Martha Marwa put a bucket of water on her head during the launch of a 220m/- borehole water supply sponsored by Serengeti Breweries Limited recently. Photo: Guardian Correspondent.

“It has been a night mare to us for many years, especially to us women and girls,” said Bhoke Nyamisi, a resident of Machochwe who attended the official handing over ceremony of a borehole valued at over 220m/- financed by Serengeti Breweries Limited.

Nyamisi said women and girls bore the brunt of perennial water shortages in Machochwe which forced them to walk long distance, sometimes spending the whole day looking for not so safe water from rivers and natural wells.

“We were walking up to six kilometres a day to get water from unclean natural sources where sometimes we faced threats from wild animals,” said Nyamisi while paying tribute to SBL’s management for the valuable borehole investment saying girls will now focus on school activities while women engage in income generating activities involving water.

Her excitement was equally shared by Serengeti District Commissioner, Nurdin Babu who officiated the handing over event. “We thank Serengeti Breweries because this is a major step in the development of our district which has serious clean water supply shortage,” Babu said while noting that the brewer has been at the forefront in promoting development projects in the country that lead to a healthy and productive society.

The Serengeti DC further stated that companies such as SBL are important partners to the government which is investing heavily in social services including clean water supply to the public especially those living in rural areas.  “SBL is helping the government to speed up the campaign to provide clean safe water to more Tanzanians especially those living in rural areas such as Machochwe,” he added.

The state targets to increase the population with access to clean safe water in rural to 85 percent by 2025 from 72.3 percent last year, according to Minister of Water, Juma Aweso’s 2021/22 budget speech delivered in parliament recently. Aweso said the urban target is over 90 percent for the same period.

In order to achieve such a feat, the Minister said the government is working in partnership with various players including private companies and development partners. SBL is one of the companies that have significantly contributed to support such state efforts to supply clean safe water to more Tanzanians.

Since 2010, the brewer has invested over 1.1bn/- to drill 18 boreholes all over the country through its Water of Life (WoL) programme.  SBL Corporate Relations Director, John Wanyancha said through the WOL programme, the brewer has provided water to residents in Iringa, Kilimanjaro, Mwanza, Tanga, Ruvuma, Dar es Salaam, Coast and Dodoma Regions with an estimated one million beneficiaries in all.

"SBL takes pride in enabling the people of Machochwe access safe and clean water closer to their homes. We believe that the project will not only boost their health but also lead to improved economic productivity as people, particularly women and girls, will no longer walk long distances to fetch water," Wanyancha said.

Machochwe’s project which was implemented in partnership with a UK based not for charity organization, WaterAid has capacity to produce 7,500 litres of water per hour.

"SBL has a policy commitment to ensure the wellbeing of communities in the country with Water of Life being one of our four initiatives to deliver on its objective to provide social support and improve the wellbeing of Tanzanians," Wanyancha added while stressing that the brewer remains committed to continue supporting state efforts to realize its ambition to supply clean and safe water to more people by 2025.

He named other areas of focus in SBL corporate social investments as provision of Skills for Life; Environmental Sustainability; and Promotion of Responsible Drinking. “Accomplishing activities in all these areas will definitely have a spill-over effect on other contemporary areas in the lives of the majority low income Tanzanians,” he noted while naming some of the areas as literacy improvement among girls, better sanitation, nutrition, health and women empowerment.

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