Hammanskraal may get clean tap water at last

FILE IMAGE: Children in Hammanskraal carry the burden of fetching water with wheelbarrows to help their families.
FILE IMAGE: Children in Hammanskraal carry the burden of fetching water with wheelbarrows to help their families.
Image: Kabelo Mokoena

People of Hammanskraal may soon have clean water coming out of their taps if a deal signed by the City of Tshwane is anything to go by.

The City of Tshwane and the Ekurhuleni Water Care Company (Erwat) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the refurbishment and upgrading of several water treatment plants in the capital.

Tshwane outgoing mayor Stevens Mokgalapa said the MoU signed last week will also benefit residents of Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria, who can't drink tap water because it isn't safe to do so.

"This MoU illustrates the DA-led administration's effort to eradicate the water crisis which is most apparent in Hammanskraal. The agreement between City of Tshwane and Erwat is that they'll assist with refurbishing and upgrading critical waste water treatment plants, namely Rooiwal, Sunderland Ridge, Baviaanspoort and Klipgat," Mokgalapa said.

The SA Human Rights Commission has had to intervene in the Hammanskraal water crisis, and conducted tests with the help of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in July last year that found that tap water in the area was not safe for human consumption.

Hammanskraal has had a long-running water problem, including poor tap water quality and intermittent cuts.

Residents are reliant on water delivered by water trucks.

According to the department of water and sanitation, the poor water quality was caused by sewage or effluent that gets discharged into the Apies River, which feeds into the Leeukraal Dam, a source of water for Hammanskraal.

Mokgalapa said the water problems in Hammanskraal are part of a "historical negligence of service delivery" which they found when they took power in August 2016.

Wilson Ramalekane, from Temba in Hammanskraal, said yesterday: "The tap water is still not good for human consumption. Water trucks are making rounds in our community."

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