Calueque-Oshakati canal in Namibia to undergo rehabilitation

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Calueque-Oshakati canal in Namibia to undergo rehabilitation

The government of Namibia has launched rehabilitation of Calueque-Oshakati canal. Namibia Water Corporation (NamWater) performed the launch ceremony of the project which will be done by three Namibian contractors.

Radial Truss Industries, Imperative Construction Engineering and Brumar Construction signed a partnership agreement with the NamWater, the public company responsible for water management. Rehabilitation works on the 150km canal will be done in phases.

Phase-I which will cover 5.8 km. According to Namibia’s Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Agrarian Reform, Calle Schlettwein this particular stretch will be rebuilt so that it can be able to continue supplying water for plants and factories.

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Calueque-Oshakati canal

According to Namibia’s Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Agrarian Reform, Calle Schlettwein this particular stretch will be rebuilt so that it can be able to continue supplying water for plants and factories.

This 150km long Calueque-Oshakati canal runs from Angola (Omahenene) to the Oshakati region in Namibia. Water that flows in the Calueque-Oshakati canal comes from the Calueque dam, located on the Cunene River in southern Angola. The project will cost approximately US $6.4m.

The dam, which has a storage capacity of 200,000m3, supplies the south of Angola, as well as four NamWater drinking water plants located in Olushandja, Outapi, Ogongo and Oshakati in Namibia. The resource is then distributed to the populations who use it as drinking water or for irrigation.

National water crisis

“NamWater spends millions of dollars every year to maintain the canal but water leaks continue due to evaporation. Some community members along the canal have deliberately vandalised the facility for aquaculture and livestock farming. In addition, farmers have planted gardens along the dam. As a result, NamWater no longer receives enough water to supply its factories, including the Oshakati drinking water plant,” said the minister.

Namibia is facing a national water crisis due to severe droughts. According to the African Development Bank (AfDB), the 2018/19 rainy season, one of the driest since 1981, has received only 50% or more of the average seasonal rainfall, posing serious challenges to the economic, environmental and social development programme of this southern African country.

In March 2020, the financial institution allocated more than US $3.3m to the Namibian government for the Namibia Water Sector Support Programme. The AfDB estimates that all components of the programme will be implemented by 2024, providing more than one million people with access to safe drinking water and sanitation services.