A health hazard is looming in Bulawayo as the sewerage system has collapsed and raw effluent is polluting the environment with over half a million dollars needed to contain the challenge.

Residents from the breadth and length of the City of Kings and Queens are complaining of the growing problem of raw sewer that is overflowing and causing discomfort to residents who have to endure the pungent smell due to blocked pipes.

While Bulawayo is known to be the cleanest city in the country, the collapse of the sewer system has put a dent on that record as the city is now badly polluted.

Bulawayo City’s director of engineering services, Engineer Simela Dube concurred that indeed the sewer system in the city had collapsed and an investment of over $500 000 is needed for the overhaul of the entire system.

“It is true that the system has collapsed and this is a situation that needs resources and we need over $500 000 so that we upgrade the whole system for the benefit of the city,” he said.

Environmental Management Agency (EMA) manager for Bulawayo Mr Decent Ndlovu said the obtaining situation in Bulawayo is of great concern as the effluent is polluting water sources in Umguza and Khami rivers and contaminating underground water sources.

“The situation is of great concern to us in terms of polluting the environment and the Umguza and Khami rivers are affected and the underground water is also affected where water from a number of boreholes is contaminated and this is a sad situation that demands investment for this to be managed properly,” he said.

The management of effluent in the city needs the commitment by the city fathers to avert an outbreak of diseases such as cholera and typhoid.