Over a quarter million Ayeyarwaddy villagers could experience El Nino induced water shortages

The Department of Rural Development has made it known the El Nino weather front could cause drinking water shortages to over 250,000 citizens of 446 villages throughout the Ayeyarwaddy Region. It has been estimated that citizens require a daily water intake of half a million gallons, while villages likely to experience water shortages should inform the relevant authorities a week before a shortage befalls them, according to the Department of Rural Development.

“Our departments have made estimations based upon studies conducted. We studied the nearest source of water to villages once the water source in the village dries up. We are ready to act as soon as these village experience any [drinking water] shortages.” said U Than Soe, head of the Department of Rural Development for Ayeyarwaddy Region.

It is known that a government budget exists of over K35 million which can be used for short term alleviation to water shortages in these village by transporting water via motorboat and car. “Those villages in real need of water can get in touch. We will provide assistance, starting from the digging of wells.” said Ko Sithu Soe, managing director of the Ayeyarwaddy Development Company that provides assistance to victims of flooding within the region.

A total of 146 villages suffered from water shortages during last year’s summer season, while this year has seen those figures increase to roughly 300 villages, with the majority of those villages located in the townships of Ngapudaw, Thabaung, Kyaunggone and Yekyi, according to the records of the Directorate of Water Resources and Improvement of River Systems. Myitmakha News Agency