Western nations on Wednesday provided $35.2 million for Zimbabwe to assist in the rehabilitation of power, water and sanitation facilities in several municipalities countrywide despite President Robert Mugabe's persistent attacks on the West for its criticism of his administration.
Speaking at the launch of the second phase of the projects initiated in 2010 during the time of the unity government, Deputy Finance Minister Samuel Undenge said the resources availed by the western donors under the Zimbabwe Multi Donor Trust Fund (Zimfund) will benefit more than five million people in major cities and other small towns such as Hwange, Redcliff, Ruwa and Chitungwiza.
Of this amount, at least $19 million will be channeled towards the rehabilitation of electricity transformers while the remaining $15.4 million will be used to increase water supply systems and sewer reticulation.
Deputy Energy Minister Munacho Mutezo said the power and water rehabilitation programs were part of the country's economic blueprint, the Zimbabwe Agenda for Socio Economic Transformation (Zimasset).
Deputy Minister of Environment, Water and Climate, Simon Musanhu, said the provision of enough clean water in several communities through these projects would result in the eradication of water-borne diseases.
A representative of the western donors and Germany Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Ulrich Klockner, said the West will continue to work with Zimbabwe in uplifting the lives of its people.
Countries that contributed towards the Zimfund include Germany, Australia, Norway, Denmark and Britain. This assistance comes despite strained relations between Harare and the West over the so-called targeted sanctions imposed on President Mugabe and his inner circle.
President Mugabe uses every available opportunity to verbally attack the West for its alleged interference in the country's internal politics.