Retrospect 2019: System to mitigate drought marks year in Cunene

Ondjiva The beginning in November of the construction of the Cunene River water transfer system, from Cafu to Shana, to mitigate the effects of drought, was the remarkable event in Angola’s south-based province (Cunene) in the year of 2019.

The 18-month project covers the construction of a Cunene River water catchment plant, pumping system and pipeline from Cafu to Cuamato.

It will also have a pumping station of 2,000 cubic meters of water per second, a 57-kilometer pipeline and 30 chimpacas (traditional rural water reservoir for watering cattle). The project created 330 jobs and will allow to irrigate 5,000 hectares of agricultural fields.

The project is part of USD 200 million funding, approved by the Angolan Executive in April 2019, and includes the construction of the Caculuve and NdA�e dams, also in Cunene province.

The severe drought in Cunene since October 2018 has affected 880,172 people and one million cattle this year, causing the death of 30,000 animals, including cattle, goats and pigs.

A cyclical phenomenon, which dates back to 1995, the drought forced the President of the Republic, JoAPound o Lourenco, to visit Cunene to learn of the harmful effects on the population, constituting another highlight in the year that ends.

The Angolan Executive released 3.9 billion Kwanzas to assist the government of Cunene Provincial to meet the urgent situations, and 150 water holes, of 171 existing in the six municipalities of the province, were recovered.

In addition, 30 lorries were purchased, including 26 tanks and four heavy-duty trucks, 20 tractors. Fifty-four, of the 190 wells, were cleared and 450 water reservoirs of 10 and 5 cubic meters distributed throughout the 20 communes.

The Executive’s measures to alleviate the suffering of drought victims also included a food supply plan and tons of other staples.

Concerning other socio-economic impact projects, in 2019, Cunene registered the inauguration of a 68-kilometer stretch of National Road (EN) 372, which connects Ondjiva and Cuamato, as well as the allocation to the local government of conservation equipment and road maintenance, consisting of motor grader, road roller, backhoe, dump truck, solid load and a container of various material.

Eighty kilometers of the Ondjiva/Omala section connecting the municipalities of Cuanhama and Cuvelai are also being rehabilitated.

In the Health sector, the year was marked by the admission, by public tender held in 2018, of 10 general practitioners, 127 nurses and 13 therapeutic diagnostic technicians, making up 90 doctors and 1,086 health technicians covering the 146 health units of the province.

This year’s highlight was also the launch in Cunene by the First Lady Ana Dias Lourenco, of the Born Free to Shine campaign, which aims to eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV.

In Education field, 2019 was marked by the distribution of 8423 desks, 547 school boards, 29,000 textbooks, six thousand backpacks for primary education, as well as the holding of eight training seminars that enabled the training of 3, 507 professionals on the learning for all project platforms.

The sending of 148 students to the Kapangombe Middle Institute of Agronomy, in the province of Namibe, in boarding school, was another relevant event this year in Cunene.

Source: Angola Press News Agency