The tourist and industrial center of Pedra de Água, located in the commune of Botera, municipality of Seles, needs investments given its industrial and tourist potential. Its rehabilitation is one of the pillars for the relaunch of the jewelery industry in the province of Kwanza-Sul and the filling of natural carbonated medicinal water, with unique characteristics in Angola and in the world.
Located 500 meters from the Cubal river bank, the place is called “Unchila Wonjamba”, which in Portuguese means “Cauda do Elefante”. The industrial and tourist center of Pedra de Água has a natural source of carbonated water in the Bamba area and as it runs it becomes stone, agglutinating leaves and tree branches. And so, from the source of thermal water a beautiful stone is formed that only nature knows what the size and the end of the process will be.
The Stone of Water is indicated for the cure of many diseases and has digestive characteristics. The Portuguese João António Veiga built in 1956 a structure for filling medicinal water from the spring. The Pedra de Água brand was highly consumed in Angola and already had customers abroad. Today the factory and other structures erected at the time are in rubble.
The current governor of Catanda, under Filipe Correia, was a worker at the Pedra de Água factory for many years until it stopped in 1980 due to the war.
According to Soba Filipe Correia, the industrial and tourist center of Pedra de Água contributed to the social and economic development of the municipality of Seles. In addition to filling the “Pedra da Água” there was a jewelery industry on site. The workshop was built in 1971 and its operation encouraged the exploration of precious and semi-precious stones in the region, which at the time generated 350 jobs.
“At the time that the Pedra de Água center was operating, we all had support in food, soap, clothes, footwear and nothing was missing. Today, people have to go to the municipality's headquarters to get these products, covering 40 kilometers on foot ”, said the elder.
The 63-year-old soba remembers the good times he experienced at that time, highlighting the supply of electric current through the mini-hydro that the center had and which allowed the performance of various services for the benefit of the inhabitants of the region.
“We lived well here, even our women did not make an effort to prepare the manioc because with the light from the mini-hydro we had the mills”, he said.
Lack of investors
The rehabilitation of the center, according to the municipal administrator of Seles, Rui Feliciano Miguel, is one of the priorities of the municipality, but the failure to fulfill the intentions of the entrepreneurs who proposed to invest is postponing the desire of the authorities and the populations.
In order to implement the plan for the rehabilitation and exploitation of the center's resources, the Municipal Administration of Seles intends to carry out a public tender to determine potential investors.
The administrator of Seles, Rui Feliciano Miguel, revealed to Jornal de Angola that to encourage potential investors, his executive is committed to repairing the road that gives access to the site, which he considered “a task that must count on the collaboration of the business class. the province of Kwanza-sul, the municipality and the country in general ”, saying that the center of Pedra de Água is an international reference.
The municipality of Seles has nine tourist centers, “Nduva”, “Pedra de Água”, “Mundo Wkua”, “Hippo's Place”, “Camira”, “Municipal Pool”, “Luai River Falls”, “Caxita” and “Morro do Nduinguiri”.