Stories and reports
Water for the people of Arachinovo
17th September 2001
In the second half of August
this year, the Macedonian center for international cooperation set up
5 plastic water reservoirs in the Skopje village of Arachinovo, for emergency
water supply of the population, with volume of 20m3 of water. This reservoirs
have been set up on various locations in the village and are connected
by a system of faucets, set up in the open, in the immediate vicinity
of the reservoirs. One of these is in the part of village mostly populated
by ethnic Macedonians. It is planned that another reservoir with a volume
of 20m3 be set up during the month of September. The water is provided
in cooperation with the government Coordination body for crisis management,
and the transport to the water reservoirs, with the help of cisterns,
is conducted by the public enterprise Communal hygiene Skopje. The Reservoirs,
depending on the intensity of water consumption, are being regularly filled
"It has never happened that there is no water on these faucets",
was said by Rufkin, an inhabitant from Arachinovo. According to him the
water supply is significantly easier now but, still, it is not a solution
for the village. "The village needs power so that we can start our
water pumps, at least as a beginning", Rufkin complained to us.
MCIC put a priority on the project for emergency water supply of around
6000 inhabitants of v. Arachinovo that returned to their homes, after
the combat activities that were performed between the Macedonian security
forces and the Albanian terrorists. Since the first moments of their return
home the villagers of Arachinovo were faced with the lack of water problem.
There is no plumbing in the village; i.e. formerly the villagers were
supplying themselves with water from wells with water pumps. The fighting
completely destroyed the power supply system (cables and electricity poles),
so at this time Arachinovo has no power. That is why the population is
unable to use the water pumps, and with them the individual water from
Still the solution of the water problem will probably be requested much
wider, with the connection of the village to the city water supply, or
at least this is what the villagers of Arachinovo hope for. "One
member of the family" says Rufkin "must be constantly engaged
with the water. Till he gets home with it he needs to return for more.
Now is not that bad, because there are more faucets and things go a bit
faster, but still it is a big nuisance for the people".
I got acquainted with G'zim on one of the points. He is only 8 years old
and he goes to third grade primary school. When he is not at school he
is responsible for the water. G'zim pushes a cart loaded with many plastic
bottles full of water. "The others have other work around the house"
he replied when we asked him why somebody else does not fetch water. "My
brother replaces me when I am at school, and when I come home I carry
water. It is very difficult", the little student complained to us,
"it is so fortunate that our house is near the faucets".
The water has been classified by MCIC as "technological water".
But this is the same water that the public enterprise "Communal Hygiene"
has been distributing to Arachinovo and this water is often used by the
villagers for drinking. The water is actually potable water. "The
water is used as drinking water and no problem has occurred thus far"
says Rufkin. "We can see the signs that say that the water is not
to be used for drinking, but we sometimes overlook them as well".
Besides this water several cisterns with water for drinking constantly
circulate through the village streets.
MCIC separated funds amounting to 770.000,00 denars for this project.
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