Camwater reveals that the “episodic shortages” observed in Yaoundé are essentially linked to “the numerous malfunctions of the Akomnyada station which supplies the city of Yaoundé”.
Nearly 4 billion FCFA have been invested in the rehabilitation and extension of this production infrastructure. But the company confesses in a report that it has just made public, “since the end of the work in 2017, this station has never produced the expected volume (300,000 m3 per day). Its production oscillates between 120,000 and 150,000 m3 per day. “However, the demography is galloping and the needs or demand has become very strong with the new districts,” reveals Camwater. Today, the demand in Yaoundé and Mbalmayo, two towns supplied by the Akomnyada catchment station, is around 300,000 m3 of water per day.
This low production can be explained, among other things, by the abnormal operation of the electric pump units; the failure of the automatic operation of the electric pump units; the difficulty of intervening on electrical problems; the discordance of the valves in the event of a power cut; the insufficient depth of the suction pipes; the non-immobilisation of the suction pipes at the bottom of the river; the small size of the suction strainer mesh, etc.
The report also reveals disturbing facts about the quality of the water produced in this plant. For example, at the ferric chloride injection points (the product used to purify the water), Camwater states that there is loss of product; poor coagulation; impact on membranes; lack of control over the volume of raw water to be coagulated; lack of control over the volume of product to be injected; low capacity of dosing pumps; unknown characteristics of dosing pumps, etc.
In the raw water tanks, the company reports a defect in the level sensors; frequent overflowing of the raw water tanks; the absence of a drainage pipe for draining and overflowing water to the sewers; dumping of draining and overflowing water into the environment; flooding of the processing area with soil erosion; loss of raw water and reduced production output.
At the “50% soda dosing station”, another treatment station, Camwater observed that the volume of water to be treated was not controlled; the volume of 50% soda to be injected was not controlled; the operation of the dosing pumps was not controlled by the flow of water to be treated, etc.
At the treatment product preparation station, the company notes that the product transfer pumps are not adapted to industrial operation; the low transfer rate of the products used from the preparation tanks to the consumption tanks, etc.
The Alomnyada plant was built in 1985 and, at the time it was rehabilitated in 2009, provided an estimated 100,000 m3 of water per day. The rehabilitation work, entrusted to the American companies General Electric and Environmental and Chemical Corporation, should have been completed in 2013, as the former CEO of Camwater, William Sollo, stated at the time.