North Mahé households urged to connect to centralised sewerage system


The Public Utilities Corporation (PUC) spent some US $14 million then to build the new sewerage system to cover the north region of Mahé.
The minister responsible for Environment and Energy Rolph Payet gave these information in the National Assembly yesterday morning while answering a question by elected member for Beau Vallon Mirena Souris.

Ms Souris had asked Minister Payet about his ministry’s plans to step up the central sewerage system project as land to rebuild septic tanks become more and more scarce.

Among the reasons the minister gave as to why other households have not yet been connected to the system are the added costs they have to incur when they decide to be connected.
“But we need to develop an implementation programme and seek ways to work with those families and encourage them to get connected to the system,” said Minister Payet.

Another reason, the minister explained, is the right for the PUC to access public property to install its various equipment necessary for connections to the system to be possible.

“Like with all PUC projects, access to private property in relation to the sewerage system is also a problem and work is ongoing to resolve those issues,” the minister added.

But Minister Payet noted that tourism establishments in the region such as Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay, Fisherman’s Cove, Coral Strand, Coco d’Or among others have already been connected to the system and new hotel establishments like the Savoy will also be connected.

Minister Payet informed the Assembly that the PUC had during the past years extended and upgraded the system to cover other areas such as upper Beau Bel and other areas of Beau Vallon.

He said the PUC also has plans to further extend the system to cover more areas of Beau Vallon such as Pascal Village and Nouvelle Vallée but this will depend on the availability of fund.

He noted that funding for the above mentioned extensions of the project will come from a loan that the PUC has just secured from the European Investment Bank (EIB) and work is expected to start mid next year.

With regard to possible water contamination in the Beau Vallon bay area, Minister Payet said there is an ongoing process to measure the level of contamination there, especially when during the rainy season contaminated water from different sources make their way to the bay.

As there is no other sewerage treatment being carried out in Beau Vallon, Minister Payet said all is being carried out at the central sewerage system and the fact that different tourism establishments are connected to the system reduces the risk of contamination considerably.

Meanwhile in its effort to put in place a more effective and sound sewerage system for the districts affected by heavy rain and severe flooding in January – Au Cap, Anse Aux Pins and Pointe Larue –  Minister Payet informed the Assembly that a US $20 million project has been submitted to the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) for funding. A team of experts from the fund is expected here soon to start planning a system for the three districts.

Minister Payet added that based on lessons learnt from recent disasters, effective and sound sewerage systems have to be put in place where new villages are being developed and in high density areas with scarce land and difficult topography.