A few weeks ago, ZAP received some very bad news in letters from Jambiani. Extracts from these letters (below) describe the plight of the villagers better than we could:

Mr Topu, Secretary of the Jambiani Village Development Committee wrote on 27.04.08:

On 15th March, the Committee called a meeting for leaders to discuss and find the solution of the great problem facing our community……which is WATER. The machine of our water centre is not functioning for nearly a month.*

We know that “WATER IS LIFE” also “NO WATER NO LIFE”. Nearly a month now Jambiani is in danger of explosion of cholera because……we have to use polluted water for drinking, cooking and washing…….the water is from the caves and old wells……..this water is not treated so it is not safe for the health of the people.

At an open meeting the women expressed their internal fear of disease eruption. They raised up their sound to say “We will be the most affected with our children by losing safe water”

Some people said that our village has already witnessed the death of our brothers, sisters, children and even our wives because of cholera and other diseases….Therefore we have to stand on the front line to…….eliminate this problem.

At the end of the meeting, the people decided to ask every household to donate Tsh 1000* with special people to collect this money and give a receipt. The day I write this we have already collected Tsh 322,000.*** Then…from the meeting people said that, ZAP is our light to the development of society. For one sound they shouted to say “PLEASE ZAP HELP US”.

Really ZAP is the NGO which feel pain for our problems, therefore the Jambiani community send their cry to ZAP….in order to avoid calamity which may emerge in our village.

* He means that the pump motor, which was never sufficient for the catchment area, has broken down. Exhaustive enquiries have revealed that the ‘bottom line’ is an

urgent need for a new, larger capacity pump – this pump needs to be installed with an electricity regulator to avoid problems with fluctuating supply.

** equivalent to less than $1 US dollar, but a big sum for a villager.

*** N.B. On May 20th, this sum had risen to Tsh 600,000.

Dr Hamza, whom Pat helped cope with the outbreak of cholera in Jambiani south villages (these now have their own newly installed and separate water supply) last year, wrote an impassioned letter himself to ‘Daktari Preece’. He tells Pat he is exhausted because he has had to deal with many, many sick people since the water supply stopped. He describes symptoms in detail, and goes on:

The actual number of …cases is twenty patients per day, this is due to the lack of water pipe, during the night-time I call on four to five patients …most of them are under five children – I tried my best to educate the villagers the important of using boiling water or treated water by children and also the important of improving personal hygiene but the condition still bad………….so I hope to get help from ZAP in order to ….solve this big problem.

Fortuitously, Mr Pandu – ZAP Manager and Director in Zanzibar – has been in the UK for the past two weeks, and was not only able to brief us on the details, but also made many phone calls to Mr Topu, Dr Hamza and other village notables to find out more facts. We have established that:

  • The system installed (e.g. the water pump taking water from a clean bore hole some distance from the village) has become inadequate for the growing population, and has had many repairs over the years.

  • The pump motor lacked an electricity regulator (essential in an area of wildly fluctuating voltage output), which caused it to burn out regularly and now to break down completely.

  • A new heavy duty pump is needed, together with a proper electricity regulator. A proper Pro-forma Invoice has been received for this. It will cost 10,000 US dollars.

  • The Government currently refuses to take responsibility for the current water supply system to this large catchment area.

  • However, the Government (or ZAWA, the Water Ministry) will provide the technicians to install the new pump. They will also waive VAT on the cost of the pump.

  • The villagers (see above) are all paying a levy of 1,000 Tsh per household.

  • We have sent letters via Mr Pandu asking for contributions from the Hotels and western residents of Jambiani.

ZAP has received many wonderfully generous donations towards the provision of a new water pump. We have promised $8000 towards this providing that the village is able to pay the balance of $2000.


Pat, Janie, Andrew, Martin.


ZANZIBAR ACTION PROJECT is a Registered Charity in the UK No. 1108030