Thapelo Lekabe

By Thapelo Lekabe

Senior Digital Journalist

‘We are sorry’: Ramaphosa offers apology to Hammanskraal residents over water quality issues

The president promised that government is attending to the challenges at Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment plant.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has apologised to residents of Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria, for the poor quality of water supplied to the area. More than 20 people have died in Hammanskraal following a cholera outbreak.

Ramaphosa visits Hammanskraal

While the exact cause of the outbreak is still under investigation, Ramaphosa offered an apology to residents for the poor quality of water, admitting that government had not lived up to their expectations of their rights to water.

“We are sorry that it has taken the deaths of a number of people, even though we have not yet confirmed that the cholera deaths are as a result of the water supplied to residents. Your basic human right of having clean water, we have not lived up to your expectations as the people of Hammanskraal,” said Ramaphosa.

The president made the remarks on Thursday while addressing residents at Temba Stadium during his visit to Hammanskraal to assess the impact of the cholera outbreak.

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He was also accompanied by ministers and deputy ministers, Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi and City of Tshwane Mayor Cilliers Brink.

Rooiwal refurbishment project

Ramaphosa promised that government was attending to the challenges at Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment plant.

This facility releases water into the Leeuwkraal Dam, which serves as the primary water source for the Temba water treatment plant responsible for supplying water to Hammanskraal.

“It will require R4 billion and money will be made available from various departments of government, including the City of Tshwane.

“The city will also make a contribution to make sure that we revamp and expand Rooiwal wastewater treatment works and we also revamp the Temba water treatment plant so that they both can deliver clean running water,” said Ramaphosa.

In a collaborative effort, the City of Tshwane and the Department of Water and Sanitation have dedicated themselves to a joint project aimed at resolving the water challenges in the community.

Their objective is to repair and enhance the Rooiwal wastewater treatment works, with an estimated budget of R4 billion allocated for the project, projected to be finished by 2026.

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