Document Type

Original Research


This paper looks at institutions and sustainability of community-owned borehole water suppliers in Chiredzi Rural District of Zimbabwe. It examines the findings in Wards 13, 14 and 15 of Sengwe Communal Lands. The total number of boreholes in the mentioned wards amounts to 58. The paper also investigates the involvement of local institutions in the management of community boreholes, the socio-economic characteristics of the users of the boreholes, the number of boreholes and their functionality, and suggests a measurement

of sustenance of the boreholes in the study area. The study uses both quantitative and qualitative methodology. Data were collected from both primary and secondary sources. Data gathering methods included questionnaires, interviews, focus group discussions and observations. The study reveals that in some villages of Sengwe Communal Lands, the majority of local institutions were not effectively involved in management of their boreholes and only a minority were effectively involved. In villages where there was less institutional involvement in the management of boreholes, most of the water points were in poor condition and needed repairs to function properly. The study concludes that there is need for policy- makers, planners, water agencies and water users to work collectively in the management and maintenance of the water points. The study therefore recommends a command approach in addition to the existing practice for sustainable water supply in the study area.