Water shortages to be addressed, says Municipality

Illustration Photo: YouTube

I understand, from our discussion that, towards the latter part of 2017 the residents of Tumahole above the Vaal Parys area pro-tested about service delivery that specifically pertained to the lack of water.
The Ngwathe municipality acted by installing a new reservoir, the fourth one within our municipal borders.
After the installation of the reservoir, residents were still unhappy because the reservoir and water pipeline were in a high-lying part of town, resulting in insufficient  coverage and poor water supply.
As an experiment, the municipality’s water and sanitation department started closing the valve in the pipeline that supplies water to the Vaal Parys area at night to allow for the new reservoir to fill up.
In the morning, after the new reservoir has been filled up, the valve would be opened again to restore water supply to Vaal Parys.
The low water pressure is a result of the Vaal Parys area reservoir emptying slowly overnight, not allowing residents like myself in the upper part of the Vaal Parys area sufficient pressure to access tap water until such time as it has filled up again during the course of the morning.
As I understand, the director of technical services, who was not present at the meeting, never informed the municipal manager of this experiment and the MM was only made aware of it upon receiving a short,        one-paragraph report earlier last week.
As I mentioned to you during the meeting, I have no problem with a water-sharing programme to allow all residents access to water.
The problem I do have is that this water-sharing programme has never been communicated to the residents of Vaal Parys.
Because it is a short-term solution to a bigger problem, the latter being a water pump at the plant that is not strong enough to pump water through the entire system to reach the higher-lying parts of town, the water shortages in Vaal Parys will continue for an indefinite period.
The municipality has committed to communicating the water-sharing programme with the residents of the Vaal Parys area and provide us with a schedule for water outages on a weekly basis.
Because it is not always possible to keep to the schedule strictly because the reservoir may empty faster on some days, the municipality agrees to notify residents of the change in the schedule as soon as they become aware that it is necessary to close the valve that provides water to the Vaal Parys area.
What was not agreed upon was the date of the first communication to residents because the municipal spokesperson, Mr Steve Naale, was not present at the meeting.
Please, can you let me know when residents can expect the first communication on this water-sharing programme?
I wish you all the best in presenting the long-term solutions to the executive committee.
As you mentioned, the Ngwathe municipality has some funds available for maintenance in its budget and that you will make every effort to install the proposed long-term solutions as soon as possible.
If you need a representative from the Vaal Parys area to assist the municipality to communicate with the residents of our area,    please know that I will avail myself to act in a professional manner as a go-between for the residents of Vaal Parys and the municipality.
Once again, I would like to thank you for receiving me in your office and for the  positive, frank discussion we have had.

* The Ngwathe Municipality this week responded by saying they are currently working on a number of initiatives regarding the provision of water on a permanent and stable basis.
“The meeting where the municipal manager played a prominent role with Ms Louw being present is an indication that we acknowledge the positive approach she has displayed in solving water supply challenges,” said the municipal spokesperso, Mr Steve Naale.
He added that they are in constant communication with residents as and when there are challenges.
“The municipality has also brought other stakeholders on board like Rand Water to find permanent solutions to our general water challenges,” Mr Naale said in a press statement.

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