LUPANE State University’s (LSU) main campus in Matabeleland North has clocked three days without tap water amid fears of a cholera outbreak.
The situation is said to be fast becoming a health hazard for the students and staff that live on campus.
“Students have now resorted to open defecation in surrounding bushes near campus and in bushes along the Victoria Falls-Bulawayo Road. Imagine that over 1 000 students started writing examinations and the environment is very unhealthy. Students are even failing to bath,” a source told Southern Eye.
Students and staff are now reportedly travelling long distances in search of water, with some going as far as Lupane centre, while others go to Bubi-Lupane Dam, which is about a kilometre from the LSU campus.
“After returning from fetching water, students are expected to sit for exams. They will be tired. If the situation is not attended to, it will bring negative results. The college engaged a contractor to bring water in bowsers, but they take long to go and fetch water from the dam,” the source said.
Student Representative Council vice-president Mbonisi Siziba said: “I can’t comment without approval from my president.”
LSU spokesperson Zwelithini Dlamini said: “The water challenges emanate from the prolonged absence of electricity which powers Zimbabwe National Water Authority pumps. Management has ensured that there is adequate fuel to power the generators to ensure that students can prepare for examinations with minimal inconvenience. Efforts are underway to mobilise water bowsers in order to mitigate a potential health hazard. We hope students will appreciate these efforts.”