R77m budget for Hartbeespoort Dam rehabilitation

Minister Senzo Mchunu, speaking at the century celebration of the dam, announced plans to rehabilitate the dam and catchment.

The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) on Monday said a budget of R77m was allocated for the rehabilitation of Hartbeespoort Dam over a three-year period.

This includes rehabilitation work in the Crocodile West catchment.

DWS Minister Senzo Mchunu said the department, along with Magalies Water, is working tirelessly to ensure the efficient rehabilitation of Hartbeespoort Dam. Mchunu was speaking during the century celebration of the dam at the Oberon Eagle Waters Resort where he led a community engagement on Monday.

“We are aware of the hyacinth at the dam, and thus are very concerned. It is for this reason that we have appointed our entity in North West, Magalies Water, for a period of three years to develop and implement a programme that will deal with the invasive plants and the algae that are infesting the dam,” said Mchunu.

Magalies Water has since developed a Bioremediation Plan comprising interventions which include, the profiling and fingerprinting of problematic contaminants in the dam, removal of floating plants and debris from the dam to enhance the aesthetic value and allow for biogeochemical processes, as well as the implementation of remediation technology to restore the dam’s ecological services.

Mchunu emphasised his commitment to overseeing the effective implementation of the Bioremediation Plan.

“We have indeed rolled up our sleeves to completely rehabilitate the dam. We also want to thank the organisations that continue to help out in any way they can and continue to hold us accountable for the work that we have been brought into office to do. We all have a responsibility to ensure that the country’s water infrastructure is safeguarded,” he said.

He encouraged all civil society organisations to work with the department towards rehabilitating the dam.

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