There is hope for the residents of Mpumalanga area of Nkomazi after being told that the R87million shortfall in the budget to supply them with clean water will be met by the provincial government.
The overall project will cost R537million.
The area has been experiencing a dire shortage of water with an estimated 49 percent of households not having access to clean running water.
The projectis expected to increase access to clean running water in the municipality by up to 68 percent.
Government spokesman Ntime Skosana said the amount would be utilised to improve water reticulation, install meters at reservoirs, upgrade boreholes and enhance water quality tests.
"The project forms an integral part of the 'Water for All' flagship that is aimed at providing access to clean running water throughout the province by 2010," Skosana said.
Nkomazi municipality, one of Mpumalanga's most populous areas with an estimated population of 338 095, comprises Tonga, Mbuzini, Hectorspruit and Driekoppies.
There are only 18 water supply schemes that service 56 villages, 12 urban settlements, farming communities, government buildings and industries.