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South Coast water crisis: MEC must take urgent action over politicisation of deployment of water tankers

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South Coast water crisis: MEC must take urgent action over politicisation of deployment of water tankers

15th October 2021

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/ MEDIA STATEMENT / The content on this page is not written by Polity.org.za, but is supplied by third parties. This content does not constitute news reporting by Polity.org.za.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has called on KZN’s CoGTA MEC, Sipho Hlomuka, to take urgent action over the gross politicisation of the deployment of water tankers along parts of the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) South Coast.

The call comes as the Protea Park community has been without water for almost two weeks. Other affected communities include Marburg, Oslo Beach and Shelly Beach which have areas that have been without water for three to five days.

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Shockingly, despite not having had water for almost 14 days, Protea Park residents have only received a water tanker once. This despite numerous requests by DA ward councillors, which have all come to nothing.

Instead, the only feedback they have received is from water tanker drivers themselves – rather than senior officials - that they have been deployed to Gamalakhe, an ANC stronghold, to provide water.

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It is evident that there is a complete breakdown in communication between the municipality and our ward councillors, with officials taking an ugly turn with obstructive and patronising messages towards councillors’ feedback requests.

Then there are the recent claims by the municipality which is blaming the shortages on leaks. Our DA councillors have been to these areas. There are no leaks and there are no plumbers deployed to fix these so-called leaks.

The DA regards this situation as unacceptable. There must be an equitable deployment of water tankers across all communities. The municipality also needs to be hauled over the coals for its lack of interest in helping so many residents.

The failure by the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), the Public Protector (PP) and the ANC-run provincial government to intervene and solve the water crisis in Ugu shows how far past the proverbial crossroads South Africa is.

These institutions are meant to protect citizens against failures to uphold their constitutional rights. Instead, the residents of Ugu are being left open to ongoing suffering.

The DA is preparing to expose government’s lack of interest in their plight. We invite residents to submit short testimonials – preferably in a video format - to us at localgovernment@dazn.org.za, outlining the effect that the water crisis is having on their lives.

It is time that the people of Ugu stand together against government’s abuse and push back against systemic failures.

 

Issued by DA Ugu South Constituency Head, Dr Rishigen Viranna, MPL

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