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Residents of Dala Township, southwest of Rangoon, received clean drinking water for the first time on Tuesday, as thousands of people across Burma face water shortages due to drought and delayed monsoons.
Woman and children in the village lined up with plastic buckets to get clean drinking water, arranged by Burmese donors who have paid for the water to be piped from downtown Rangoon.
Near the township, which lies just across the Rangoon River from the heart of the city, several lakes have completely dried up and the little water that is available is not drinkable.
“The problem with the water in Dala Township is that the water is salty. There are too many minerals in it and it cannot be used. Some people have to mix the water with lime, just for daily use for showers and to wash clothes. That’s all,” regional head Zaw Myo said.
Sixty-year-old Dala resident, Daw Mya Yin, was happy that her village now has access to drinking water.
“I am so happy,” she said, “It’s been a while since we had drinking water. We are now facing a water shortage.”
Water shortages have been spreading nation-wide since April due rising summer temperatures and dried-up reservoirs. Weather reports have recorded temperatures as high as 40°C (104°F) in some areas.