LIMPOPO – According to Charlotte Senosha, DA Councillor in Mogalakwena Municipality, the DA reported Mogalakwena’s water crisis to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC).
“The DA has filed a complaint at the SAHRC to probe Mogalakwena Municipality for failing to provide clean water to the residents of Dipere in Bakenberg outside Mokopane for over 30 years.”
Senosha said the DA witnessed several residents fetching water from the river bed in the bushes during the DA’s oversight inspection to assess the water crisis and its impact within Mogalakwena on Wednesday, 11 July.
“The DA has noted that the residents opted to dig a deep hole in this river to find water due to the shortage of water in this community.
“Many residents are now forced to share this water with their animals on a daily basis which violates their human rights to have access to clean water as enshrined in the Constitution.”
Senosha said the DA is deeply concerned that sharing water with animals can cause different waterborne diseases to the residents and is simply unhygienic.
“The DA can confirm that the water crisis continues despite a R16 million budget allocation in the 2018/2019 financial year.
“The municipality has used the conditional grants meant for water and electricity infrastructure to pay salaries in the 2017/2018 financial year and still owes Magalies Water a staggering R15 million.”
Senosha said this show that the ANC led municipality has failed the residents of Mogalakwena for far too long and a serious intervention is urgently needed.
“The DA urges the SAHRC to start with their investigation to ensure that the dignity of the residents is restored.
“The DA is ready to deliver the kind of change that puts the people, basic human rights and quality service delivery first.”
According to a survey of the Department of Water and Sanitation various parts of Limpopo experienced water challenges since the early 2000’s and residents of Mogalakwena Municipality have been at the receiving end of this water crisis.
Accessing clean drinkable water has been a daily struggle for them.
Parts of South Africa is running out of water and as of 13 January 2018, the Department of Water and Sanitation classified 243 of South Africa’s 565 rivers as low or very low.
A 2015 study from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development noted that over a quarter of the country’s river ecosystems were critically endangered.
Bosveld did not receive comment from Malesela Selokela, Head of communication for Mogalakwena Municipality before the newspaper went to print.