Mozambique Capital to Shut Off Water Supply on Alternating Days

(Bloomberg) -- Mozambican authorities will tighten water restrictions in the capital, Maputo, and the neighboring city of Matola because dams that supply the locations have fallen to one-fifth of their capacity, the Water Ministry said.

The two cities, home to more than 2.7 million people, will cut water supplies on alternating days, the Maputo-based O Pais newspaper reported, citing Public Works, Housing and Water Resources Minister João Machatine. Levels at the Pequenos Libombos dam, the main water source, fell to 20.4 percent, from 21 percent on Jan. 23.

Reservoir levels normally rise at this time of year, after the rainy season starts in November, but precipitation has been scarce. Most parts of southern Mozambique have received less than 75 percent of the rainfall typically expected from October to early this month, according to a Jan. 23 report by the Southern African Development Community.

Last year, Cape Town in neighboring South Africa introduced severe water restrictions that helped the city narrowly avoid running out completely.

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