1,300 residents to benefit from water distribution system in Phillipai
Over 1,300 residents of Phillipai, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) will benefit from potable water for the first time as a $53.683 million well will be drilled in the community by the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI).
The project, which is expected to commence next week and to be completed by the end of September, falls under GWI’s Water Supply Improvement Project. Once completed it will see 90 per cent of the population having access to potable water for the first time.
Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal visited the village on Tuesday and made this announcement during a community engagement at the Phillipai Primary School.
Currently, the community has no functioning water supply system, since the old facility became dilapidated and has been out of operation for the past few years. As such, residents have been fetching water from the spring, river and practicing rainwater harvesting for consumption.
However, Minister Croal said that once completed, the new water supply system will have a lifespan of over 20 years. He added that mechanisms will be put in place to ensure proper management and maintenance of the system.
He emphasised that the government is committed to ensuring that all villages in the hinterland have access to potable water.
“As a Guyanese, it doesn’t matter if you are at the bottom of the map or the top of the map, we will deliver water to you,” the minister said.
He added, “We have a mandate, and we were elected to serve the people of Guyana including Phillipai. When we design and develop programmes for the hinterland it is geared towards bridging the gap between the coastland and the hinterland.”
The scope of works of the project includes; drilling of a new potable water well, installation of 200 service connections, construction of 20 feet high elevated metal water trestle with storage and the installation of photovoltaic pumping system including submersible pump, controller, solar panels and accessories.
Minister Croal reminded residents that Guyana has signed on to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal- 2030 and the government is committed to fulfilling its obligations.
“We are putting the water system here so that you can access water to your home. If some of you prefer to use the water from the river you are free to do so, but we, as a government, have a duty to ensure all of the citizens have access to proper water and sanitation in keeping with the SDG- Six.”
When the PPP/C Government took office in August 2020, it found that only 34 percent of the Region Seven population had access to potable water. With the interventions undertaken since then, Minister Croal said the population with access to water increased to over 47 per cent, and by the end of 2022, it is expected to move up to 61 per cent coverage.
In 2021, the villages of Kamarang and Jawalla benefitted from new water supply systems at a cost of $42.8 million and $38.8 million respectively, while the system at Kurutuku was completed at a cost of $15 million. This year, in addition to Phillipai, new water supply systems will be installed at Waramadong, Tassarene and Isseneru for a total contract sum of $222 million. Kaikan village will also receive a new system to the tune of $40 million.
Minister Croal said that by 2025, similar projects will be extended in communities including, Quebanang, Wax Creek, Batavia, Daag Point, Arau, Kangaruma, Karrau, Imbamadai, Itaballi, Westerbeck, Kartabo, Amakokopai and Warawatta.