Alex Japho Matlala
2 minute read
5 Jun 2020
6:25 am

Sekhukhune area to get more water tankers to counter virus crisis

Alex Japho Matlala

'We have over 69 villages in Moutse East and West and a further 20 more in the three local municipalities currently facing acute water shortages,' said Seun Mogotji of the Bolshevik Political Party.

Murky rivers are the only source of water for some residents in the Sekhukhune municipal district in Limpopo. Picture: Supplied.

The Sekhukhune district municipality, which is the epicentre of Covid-19 infections in Limpopo, will soon receive 20 new trucks from Lepelle Northern Water to help curb the spread of coronavirus in the region, executive mayor and ANC chairperson Stan Ramaila said yesterday.

“Five of the trucks are already on the way and the remaining 15 will be handed over very soon.

“The trucks are to help fast-track the provision of water in four subregions and in areas hard hit by drought.

“There are also 150 new water tanks delivered by the department to help those in affected areas.

“The water will go a long way in assisting our people fight the deadly coronavirus,” said Ramaila.

Lepelle Northern Water (LNW) is a state-owned entity responsible for bulk water supply in Limpopo on behalf of the national department of water and sanitation, under Minister Lindiwe Sisulu.

The department has commissioned LNW to turn around the water situation in Moutse’s Elias Motsoaledi and Ephraim Mohale municipalities and other parts of the Sekhukhune region.

The region is in the throes of a drought following years without rain and has been wracked by contractual disputes with service providers appointed to deliver water.

Ramaila said although the region was pleased with the working relationship established with the mines to fight the disease, that most of the mines were within communities was a cause for concern for many communities as the disease could spread into villages.

He added: “We are, however, very excited about the latest statistics released by the department of health in the province, which showed a number of recoveries from Covid-19.

“As of Monday, when we concluded our district command council virtual meeting, the region had registered a total of 108 cases, with 88 recoveries and one death.”

But opposition parties in the province cautioned that the jubilation could be short-lived if the chronic water shortage in the area continued.

The Bolshevik Political Party, which is vocal about service delivery in Sekhukhune, was not impressed. The party, headed by Seun Mogotji, said water scarcity was still a huge problem in the district and that if not checked, thousands of people could lose their lives to Covid-19.

“We have over 69 villages in Moutse East and West and a further 20 more in the three local municipalities currently facing acute water shortages. This is in spite of the fact that millions of rands have been injected by government,” said Mogotji.

“We want to caution the district to stop celebrating and instead educate our people, especially the downtrodden, the poorest of the poor and the have-nots, who do not have water to wash, cook or bath, about the how merciless the coronavirus is.

“Soon, we will be like Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Gauteng if we do not get water.”

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