The National Water Supply and Sanitation Council (NWASCO) says the alleged contamination of water with an acid solution in Mufulira on the Copperbelt could not have been the cause of lower abdominal pains and vomiting among some residents there.

NWASCO Public Relations Officer Katendi Wandi said this in a statement released to ZANIS in Lusaka today.

Ms. Wandi said following media reports of water contamination, NWASCO carried out investigations which revealed that while underground water was contaminated, the acid contamination dropped to levels not harmful to humans after treatment.

She said the investigation revealed that the reported cases of illness after taking the alleged contaminated water were localised and sporadic within Kantanshi casting a doubt as to whether the complaints of abdominal pains may have been caused by the water.

Ms. Wandi further said it was revealed that no other cases were reported in areas supplied by the same water plant in Mufulira or in areas closest to the plant where the contamination levels could have been higher.

She has called on health authorities to investigate the matter to ascertain the cause.

On Wednesday last week, about 756 people in Mufulira’s Kantanshi township drunk tap water alleged to have been contaminated with sulphuric acid from Mopani Copper Mine and suffered abdominal pains and vomiting.

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20 COMMENTS

  1. 756 people People pretending to be sick is something interesting. This is an insult to Mufulira residents. Madam, can you please do you research according to scientific principles.

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  2. I consider Katendi Wandi’s statement absurd but she is just the Public Relations Officer, the mouthpiece of NWASCO and most likely only studied E110 series at UNZA, not sciences. We need a more competent authority to comment please.

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  3. 1,2 & 3
    I don’t know why you are whinging, NWASCO’s explanation is credible and we should all be happy that acid contamination has been eliminated.But it still means that there was another cause for these illnesses the medical team needs to investigate thoroughly and find the cause.

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  4. I knew this was coming! Soon it will be a similar statement from Environmental Council of Zambia. Ms Wandi has definately been corrupted by Mutati. What is interesting is that MCM themselves, through their mine captain, accepted they poluted the water. But this Wandi’s statement is very confusing “THE ACID CONTAMINATION DROPPED TO LEVELS NOT HARMFUL TO HUMANS AFTER TREATMENT.” Isn’t she acknowledging there was contamination but that this later dropped? ‘Not harmful after treatment’?????

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  5. #4, MR CITIZEN,
    Are you suggesting the 756 people faked illness or suffered from some airborne disease? Awe bane tulebako serious!!

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  6. #4, where on earth(apart from your earth, of course) can you have the coincidence of acid spilling into a waterway in a particular area and 756 people in that area getting sick? Mpaka lesa aseluke ese amyebati the acid caused that illness? # 4 get serious for once.

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  7. 5,6-7 Ba LEX na ba Mutino,

    You “Serious” gentleman I would only request you to have serious analytical minds and not ones tainted by mob psychology. Ask yourselves these simple questions how come only people in Kankoyo were affected and not people in other townships where the same water was pumped and drunk?. How come the residents near the pump or water treatement plant were not affected and yet residents in Kankayo which is far away from the epicentre were affected?.

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  8. 5,6-7 Mwe ba Serious
    The people who wee infected come from one are in Kankoyo.It could be that the infection could be water borne but getting into the water system at Kankoyo or it could be an outbreak of some disease which needs to be seriously investigated by health authorities, let them rule out cholera, typhiod, dengue fever,black water fever. It could be a new desease occuring due to wet unsanitary conditions. Keep an open mind dont reason like komboni housewives

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  9. #9 Mr CITIZEN,
    “komboni housewives” ??? Yaba!!!
    Let us wait for ECZ’s report aswell. Otherwise its not uncommon for a water utility Co. to supply different qualitities of water to various classes of consumers through the use of VALVES within the supply system.
    But the mere use of words like ANALYTICAL doesn’t qualify one to be real analytical. And too much analysis also makes one lose focus to an extent that they even fail to see the reality. I will choose not to clash with you…

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  10. 11 Ba LEX

    Ba Lex a valve “Gate Valve” or “T valve” on water supply line is only used to stop the flow of water on a trunk line or to manage a the connection of a supply line from a trunck line it is almost impossible that foreign matter can be introduced into the water at the valves to affect the quality. However it possible for foreing liquid contaminants to be introduced into the water through corroded sections on the water pipe stems. It is possible for sewage over flow to contaminate

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  11. Ba Nwasco! you are a disappointment. In the first place who gave you the report? Do not take people for granted. Just continue drinking mineral water in your offices. We are not fools to be provoked in this way. What you are doing is inciting peaceful people to become violent.. You have also joined the ECZ. People are being killed solwly by sulphur dioxide and yet ECZ come to Muf every day. Just continue receiving brown envelops from Mopani while we die.

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  12. ba Muf resident(13) lelo elyo “senta” yaba issue?? becoming violent now…. what about during the NCCM/RCM/ZCCM days ?? i sympathise with you but i sense opportunism here!! lets not get carried away over some of these things!!!

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  13. Bwana CITIZEN since you claim ati mwaliba ANALYTICAL I wish to ask this again, where on earth can you have the coincidence of acid spilling into a waterway in a particular area and 756 people in that area getting sick? Being too analytical makes one fail to see common sense. I remember arguing with an engineer in 1999 over the Y2K crap, he was telling me systems would crash wat wat but I told him that such a theory was not supported by common sense. Wait for the truth to come out bwana CITIZEN

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  14. 15 Ba Mutino,
    Common sense is very rare. If you use you common sense you will notice the acid contaminated the water table which means all the water going to the treatment plant was contaminated after treatment the same water was pumped to various townships and yet only people in Kantanshi are alleged to have been affected by the acid in the water. It is like drinking water from the same well some people get sick and claim that it was the water from the well while others are still fit.

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  15. It would be common sensen to think that the poeple who got sick must have been drinking from contaminated cups. All the water got contaminated at their houses during storage. In short if you use both common sense or logic you will conclude that it was not the acid that contaminated the water in the water table that was affecting these people.

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  16. MR CITIZEN,
    You can now PLEASE read ECZ,s report on the front page of 9/1/2008 issue of Times of Zambia and the verdict they have passed on MCM on this same issue.
    Nwasco’s incompetence and biasness has been exposed. Just because Mulonga water & sewarage falls under them, they rushed to issue an unsubstantiated statement when victims were still in hospital receiving treatment. Its dangerous to have an analytical but uknowledgeable mind!

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  17. What does this Katendi girl about water contamination? I think its high time people started being serious with the capacity of their workers especially PR staff. Very incompetent. Katendi, this is not djaying or Chez Ntemba! Work up small girl!

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