Wauna residents joyful as work commences on new well

The Guyana Water Inc (GWI) has commenced drilling of a new well in Wauna, Region One, that will benefit more than 500 residents when completed in September of this year.

The project estimated to cost under $10 million, is being undertaken by GWI’s hinterland in-house team of engineers and technicians. Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal on a visit to the project site on Monday was happy to see work in progress and urged the workers to deliver the project within time.

Housing and Water Minister Collin Croal (left) makes a point to GWI Hinterland Services Director, Ramchand Jailall (second left) at the drill site on Monday

The drilling of the well is the first step in the fulfillment of a promise made by President, Dr Irfaan Ali during a community engagement with Region One residents.

“Knowing the constraint that we have in the supply of water in the township, this well is part of the holistic plan of the government in addressing, in a fast-tracked way, the water issues that are confronting the people of Mabaruma,” the minister said.

When the new well comes on stream, residents of Wauna will no longer have to rely on the reservoir at Wanaina which at times has not always been reliably.

On Monday, Neil Chu, 70, a resident of Wauna for more than two decades, was on site observing the drilling exercise and could hardly contain the joy of soon having a well in his community.

Neil Chu

“This is a very good initiative, we depend on the reservoir at Wanaina, which is about four miles from this project site, and sometimes it is a struggle to get water. We are delighted that the government is delivering on its commitment to the people of Wauna and Mabaruma as a whole and we look forward to receiving reliable supply of water in the comfort of our homes,” a jolly Chu said.

Residents of Wauna harvest rainwater for cooking and domestic use and would utilize water from the creeks when rainwater is in short supply and the Wanaina reservoir runs low.

“This will be a big relief for us,” Carla Ramit told GWI, pointing out that “We receive water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays and the pressure is low in some parts of the Wauna. Thanks to GWI and the government for listening to us and delivering on their promise to the residents of Wauna.”  

The supply of water to Wauna residents will be made easier since GWI will be utilizing the existing water distribution system in the community. The utility will also connect the water systems in the municipality to improve the level of service to residents. GWI Hinterland Services Director, Ramchand Jailall said his team is pushing to complete the well and connection to the distribution network by the end of September, noting that improved service to residents is a top priority of GWI.

Carla Ramit

The well once completed will initially serve more than 500 residents of Wauna and depending on its capacity, service could be extended to 500 more.

The government is investing heavily to improve access to water in the hinterland regions of Guyana.

GWI last Sunday commissioned a $20 million water system at Kwebanna, bring relief to some 900 residents of the remote community and Minister Croal has announced that a well will be installed in Warapoka, directly benefitting hundreds of residents there as well.

Meanwhile, work has started on a new well in Wallaba, Region One, as GWI steams ahead with its hinterland work programme.

The utility in the past two years has done significant work to increase access to water in the hinterland regions. Access has increased from 46 per cent in 2020 to 75 per cent at the end of 2022 and GWI is working aggressively to push this number to 85 per cent by the end of this year.

The government this year has allocated some $1.4B for the drilling and installation of water distribution network in the hinterland regions in aid of the goal to achieve 100 per cent access to water services by residents of hinterland and riverine communities by 2025.