CONCERNED residents have appealed to Lusaka City Council to work on unblocking drainages in their areas to avoid flooding which is the main cause of waterborne diseases such as cholera.
Fear has gripped many residents in the capital city following the cholera outbreak in Kanyama township which has claimed one life and several people are hospitalised.
The residents have criticised the council for allowing drainages to be blocked by sand or garbage that has been thrown in trenches.
They have said that there was need to work on the drainages to avoid floods which were the mode by which deadly waterborne diseases were easily spread now that the rains were in full swing.
Mr Samson Machanga told the Daily Nation said that there was need for the council to move in quickly and clear the drainages to allow water to flow freely when it rains.
Mr. Machanga said blocked drainage were a danger to the health of citizens because they caused flooding which spread diseases.
‘‘The council should take serious action and ensure that the drainages are worked on in time before the rains get heavy and the town gets flooded.
‘‘Having a flooded town is not healthy for anyone and Lusaka town has a lot of filth which is exacerbated by flooding. There are a lot of people moving around in the business centre and if the drainages are blocked it will make the situation worse,’’ he said.
He said blocked drainages flood the city, making it hard for motorists to drive through floods and this might lead to an increase in the number of road traffic accidents.
Ms Gertrude Daka said it was the responsibility of the council to ensure that the town was clean and free of flooding caused by blocked drainages.
Ms. Daka said that if all the drainages were blocked it was likely to cause a huge flood that might affect all the surrounding areas and disrupt many businesses. But Lusaka City Council public relations manager Mulunda Habeenzu said that clearing the drainages was not the responsibility of the council alone but residents as well.
Mr. Habeenzu said that if people were aware that they benefit greatly from having drainages there was no reason why they could fail to maintain them instead of throwing garbage carelessly when council has provided them with rubbish bins.
‘’These people should realize that the drainages are not for the council but are for them to use and as such they should ensure that they maintain them and the best way of maintaining drainages is by ensuring that they do not throw garbage where it is not supposed to be.
‘‘Instead they should be throwing it in the right places; that way we will not have to worry about blocked drainages because they will always be clean,’’ said Mr. Habeenzu.