The First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports Mrs. Janet Museveni has commissioned and officiated at the dedication ceremony of Kataraka Gravity Flow Scheme (GFS) that was built by Living Water International (LWI) Uganda in Nyakyera Subcounty in Ruhaama Ntungamo District.
The Kataraka Gravity Flow Scheme is one of the many water sources constructed under the Ruhaama Water Access, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Improvement Programme since 2009 when Mrs. Janet Museveni who was the then MP Ruhaama invited Living Water International, a Christian not-for- profit NGO to help address the lack of clean water for the people in her Constituency.
The commissioned water system covers two sub counties of Nyakyera and Ntungamo and serves about 11,000 people in three parishes, nine villages, six trading centers and 17 institutions including schools, churches and health centres. It has three reservoirs with a total capacity of 90,000 Liters and 51 water points covering more than 25 kilometers and it is one of the largest water schemes in Ntungamo District.
While addressing the people who gathered for the water system dedication ceremony on Tuesday at Kataraka Church of Uganda grounds in Nyakyera Sub County, Mrs. Museveni said she was thankful to God who hears and answers His people’s prayers. She gave a testimony saying that it is only through prayer and support from her friends in the United States of America that she managed to get Living Water International to come to Ruhaama and do the good work of increasing access to water and improving sanitation and hygiene in the area.
Reminding the people about the dire lack of clean water she found in Ruhaama when she became the area MP in 2006, she said, “Just as I used to tell you then, everything that I do, I do it because of my fear and love of God and the faith I have in Him. So, I started praying to God about the Ruhaama people’s outcry for water and asked Him to provide water to His people. The primary starting point of the water we are celebrating in Ruhama today is a result of my prayer and God’s answer through His people who listen to Him and serve Him”.
She advised the people to stop thinking that prayer is just a waste of time and God an old story and urged them to instead always seek for God’s counsel in whatever they do and wherever they are if they want solutions for their problems and if they want to live purposeful lives.
She thanked Living Water International for being faithful and serving God’s people and also commended the people especially the youth who have committed to voluntarily protect the water reservoirs.
Mrs. Museveni who said she was impressed by the hard work of the people of Ruhaama exhibited by the beautiful houses in the area and the gardens, encouraged them to work even harder and to utilize the still vacant but arable land to produce enough food for their families and children while at school and also for sell. She also implored parents to protect and take care of the children who she said are our hope and future.
The Country Director Living Water International (LWI) Uganda Benard Mooya Kachiko said that their organization had delivered tangible results for the people of Uganda over the years including construction of over 11,000 water projects benefitting more than 400,000 people and 129 institutional latrines mainly in schools benefitting more than 10,000 pupils. He added that through their engagement with the local church, they have also reached more than 600,000 people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and helped strengthen unity and cooperation among the body of Christ.
He reported that before the Kataraka water scheme that was built with funding from Rees Jones Foundation, people in the villages depended on open ponds as the main sources of drinking water and most households lacked latrine facilities. “All this has now changed, the people in these villages have been empowered to experience multiple benefits. For instance, women and girls no longer walk long distances to fetch water, farmers are more productive due to the availability of water for production and the people of Nyakyera and Ntungamo Sub counties now experience reduced death/illnesses from diarrhea”, he said.
The Living Water International Uganda Director appealed to Government for a tax exemption on equipment and borehole materials to enable this non-profit organization continue to provide safe drinking water to Ugandans. “In the last three years, we have spent more than Ug. Shillings 790 million on import duty for equipment and boreholes materials which money could have helped construct 50 boreholes benefitting 15,000 persons, and in 2019 alone we shall spend over Ug. Shillings 360 million if the status-quo remains”, he said.
The function was also attended by MPs Moses Mugabe Kahima for Ruhaama, Beatrice Rwakimaari Woman MP Ntungamo and Michael Timuzigu for Kajara plus Ntungamo District Chairman Denis Singahache, RDC George Bakunda, leaders from South Ankole Diocese and leaders from Nyakyera and Ntungamo Sub counties. They all paid tribute to Mrs. Janet Museveni for inviting Living Water International to Ruhaama and for the better quality of life this organization has enabled for the people of Ntungamo District. They also thanked Living Water International for the good work done in their area.
Rev Canon Joash Tushangomujuni, the Dean of South Ankole Diocese, represented BishopAhimbisibwe and dedicated Kataraka GFS to God in prayer.
A number of people were awarded with bicycles and T-shirts in recognition for being the best Community Based Organization and Village Caretakers, Cluster heads, Parish Chief and best Health Assistant in the Ruhaama WASH Programme Area.
Living Water International Uganda exits Ntungamo after 8 years after constructing 355 water sources including large scale water systems at Kishami, Buhanama, Kashanda and Kataraka and 88 stances of institutional latrines among others. A new programme to help the people of Mayuge District which is currently experiencing the greatest WASH challenge in Uganda will be opened this year.