The second biggest inland lake in Zimbabwe after Tokwe-Mukosi, Lake Mutirikwi, is now at 93.29 percent water level with the levels expected to increase as the country is expecting more rains this year.
According to information released during a tour organised by Zimbabwe Union of Journalists (ZUJ) on October 21 2021, Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (Zinwa) river inspector Tungamirai Chireshe, said the dam level stood at 93.29 percent.
“Currently the dam level is at 93.29 percent and the maximum capacity of the dam is 100 percent and this is when the water spills through the top flood gates,” said Chireshe.
Chireshe also said the current water level is not good for the structure as we are nearing the rain season because it is not safe for the dam to spill water during the first rains and it is dangerous for the structure as there will be much pressure for the dam wall.
“As we face the rainy season, it is not safe and not recommended to spill water during the first rains, as it is a threat to the dam wall as it might crack or move due to the pressure or force,” said Chirese.
He added that the dam is spilling almost 10 000 litres per second and they are expecting to increase the volume to 20 000 litres so that they feed the down streams dams like Bangala Dam and wish to reach a level that is safe for the structure.
“Right now we have opened one gate that is spilling almost 10 000 litres per second and we are proposing to increase to 20 000 litres per second so that we feed down streams like Bangala dam.
“It is better that we drain the water downstream because we are expecting more rains this year and our wish is to get at 80 percent water level before the rain comes as it is a bit safer for the structure,” added Chirese.
Chirese also said that they are engaging in many measures to reduce or prevent siltation around the lake and also educating villagers on the dangers that they face by living in and around catchment areas.
He said Environmental Management Agency (EMA) and sub-catchment councillors are also helping them in educating the people together with prevention measures.
“We are engaging in many measures to prevent siltation with help from EMA and sub-catchment councillors. We are also trying to educate the people near the lake on the dangers they can face by settling in the catchment area,” said Chireshe.