Minister 'resolute in finding permanent water-supply solutions for North West'

21 January 2023 - 16:46
A technical task team is being established to deal with water and sanitation challenges in the North West.
Image: 123RF/Weerapat Kiatdumrong A technical task team is being established to deal with water and sanitation challenges in the North West.

A steering committee co-chaired by water and sanitation minister Senzo Mchunu and North West premier Bushy Maape is being set up to ensure the management and sustainability of such services in the province, the minister said.

A technical task team comprising engineers from the department, the Magalies Water Board and district and local municipalities to carry out assessments, planning and implementation of water and sanitation needs for the North West will be established, Mchunu added.

The minister said he was confident these structures would yield positive results in resolving water challenges affecting most communities in the province.

“Minister Mchunu ... spent two days in Maquassi Hills and the Ramotshere Moiloa local municipalities on Thursday and Friday to assess the state of water and sanitation in those parts of the province and to receive an update on the water supply interventions that are being implemented through the Water Services Infrastructure Grant (WSIG) granted by the department,” said his spokesperson Wisane Mavasa.

“The technical committee will be responsible for assessing every municipality, looking at available resources, analysing existing water schemes, those projects that are complete and incomplete, and all causes of stress on water in the province to come up with solutions,” Mchunu said.

“This task team should be able to provide us with a detailed plan of what needs to be done, costs and contributions by each municipality, at a local and district level, and the board, as well as the department to restore water in areas where there are challenges,” he added.

Mavasa said Mchunu emphasised the need for collective planning and implementation of action plans by all role players to ensure synergy and sustainable provision of water and sanitation services in North West.

“One of the reasons that the work that is being carried out by government is not able to meet people’s needs and demands is the mentality of working in silos.

“The issues of water in the North West do exist and are serious, but they are not insurmountable. They are not such big issues that they may make us put our hands on our heads and wonder how we are going to fix it. Rather it needs a collective approach. We therefore are going to fix this ourselves as national, provincial, and local government as well the role players in this water sector,” Mchunu said.

The technical team is expected to report on the plan, which will provide guidance on what needs to be done to ensure reliable water supply in the province, to the steering committee in the first week of February.

In the same month last year, Mchunu visited Dinokana in Ramotshere Moiloa municipality, one of his flagship projects.

The department is intervening in the municipality through the Rural Water Supply Project to ensure communities have access to water.