By Julius Ocungi
Gulu - Gulu Municipality residents are currently receiving rationed water supply from National Water and Sewerage Corporation due to reduced water levels following the long dry spell in the region.
Since the beginning of the week, severe water shortage has hit the municipality with residents flocking boreholes and wells as alternative water sources due to inconsistencies in water supply by NWSC.
Mr Paul Rackara, the NWSC Gulu Branch manager, told Daily Monitor in an interview on Thursday that water levels at their main dam have drastically reduced due to the prolonged dry spell.
"We are currently incapacitated to consistently supply our clients in the municipality because water levels at the dam are low. We have now resorted to rationing water to different areas at particular times to save the situation," Mr Rackara said.
He said currently, they are supplying only 2.3 million cubic meters of water unlike in the past when they supplied 4.8 million cubic meters of water.
Mr Rackara said areas within the municipality normally receive water only at night while those in the outskirts are supplied once during day time.
"We hope that normal supply will resume once the rains start. We have been sending information to our clients on our current situation and we believe they won't panic," Mr Rackara said.
Ms Joyce Oyet, a restaurant owner in Layibi Division, said the current water shortage has affected her business since she has to trek long distances in search of boreholes and wells to draw water.
She said unlike tap water that costs Shs150 per jerrycan, at bore holes, they are charged between Shs500 and Shs700, adding that in a day, she spends between Shs5,000 to Shs7,000 on just water.
Gulu Resident District Commissioner Capt Santos Okot Lapolo, last week blamed locals encroaching on wetlands for the current water shortages in the municipality and warned that they will be evicted if they don't vacate the wetlands within one week.
According to the weather report released by Uganda National Meteorological Authority (UNMA) early this month, Gulu District recorded the highest temperature in the country in February at 35.8 degrees centigrade.
Weather experts, however, predict that Gulu District among other northern Ugandan districts currently experiencing dry spells, will endure the spell until mid-March this year where the rainy season is expected to start.
Source: All Africa