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The GOOD Party is concerned about the last-minute communication by Rand Water and Johannesburg Water warning that the city’s water demand is exceeding supply.
In a joint statement, residents were cautioned of a possible “collapse of the system” which will lead to an “intermittent water supply”.
For weeks Rand Water and the City of Tshwane have been communicating about an increase in water consumption in the country’s capital.
But Rand Water and Johannesburg Water have waited for supply issues to have already started in Johannesburg before warning of high consumption.
Two days prior to the water entities statement, the Gauteng Department of Health warned of water supply interruptions impacting patient care at Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital and Helen Joseph Hospital in Johannesburg as well as Pholosong Hospital in Ekurhuleni.
South Africa is a water-scarce country and consumers need to play their part to ensure water is used sparingly and wisely.
However, it is critical that authorities play their part and warn citizens timeously if they are facing extreme supply constraints.
Authorities also need to devise a long-term plan to solve the looming water crisis.
It is clear that the National Department of Water and Sanitation’s 2015 “War on Leaks” campaign failed the province.
The programme was set up after a study by Stellenbosch University showed that the country lost up to 37% of potable water due to failing infrastructure, ageing infrastructure and illegal connections.
The programme saw thousands of school matriculants training as Water Agents, Artisans and Plumbers.
But like many noble initiatives run by the ANC government, the programme failed due to allegations of maladministration and corruption.
It is 8 years later and nothing has been done on a national or provincial level to address the looming water shortage we are facing as a country.
Rising temperatures are only going to worsen the issue as the country moves into Summer.
GOOD in Gauteng calls on the provincial government to avert Day Zero by accelerating efforts to fix water leaks and maintain crucial infrastructure.
In the meantime, GOOD calls on residents to play their part and assist the government by using water sparingly.
Issued by Matthew Cook, GOOD: Gauteng Political Manager