Nkana Water and Sewerage Company says the high customers arrears from both individual clients and government institution is making the utility struggle with its operations.

The company disclosed that said some government institutions had not been settling their bills and were now owing the company about K74 million.

During a presentation held at the Riverside Nkana Water and Sewerage Company head office in Kitwe, Acting Managing Director Clife Bwalya said if clients settled their bills the company would be able to settle debts as well.

He said residents from communities had high areas due to low income.

Bwalya said the water company has also been facing a number of challenges that has been affecting the distribution of water to its clients.

Bwalya said some of the major challenges include old water pipes and the growing of roots and weeds inside water pipes had been hindering the company from supplying clean safe water.

He said the company had also been affected by illegal connections that were rampant in residential areas

“Old water pipelines have been a major challenge to the company because sometimes water is cut off from an area thereby giving us challenges with water networks. Some of our pipes also have been vandalised by some residents who have tempered with some sewer lines which they use to irrigate their vegetables. But as a company we have given ourselves a target of operating fully at 100 percent,” he said.

And Bwalya said with the many challenges that the company had been facing, he was happy to inform the Nation that about 10,000 automated meter readers were to be installed in high cost areas and would help enhance accountability and income generation.

And Copperbelt Provincial Permanent Secretary Bright Nundwe said water was an important resource to human life which needed to be protected.

He said every individual in the country had the right to access clean drinking water.

“I want NWASCO to work together with the Kitwe City Council so that you can improve the service delivery of water in the city because issues of water and sanitation should not be take lightly as it is not right for one to stay home without water, therefore water provision should be provided at a 24 hours rate,” said Nundwe.