Ramaphosa’s Limpopo water visit a ‘gimmick’ for ANC conference

The president has been accused of being opportunistic.

The Forum of Limpopo Enterpreneurs has branded the visit by President Cyril Ramaphosa in Limpopo an election gimmick to bag more support for the ANC national elective conference this Friday.

Ramaphosa was in Limpopo on Sunday with Water and Sanitation Minister Senzo Mchunu and Limpopo premier Stan Mathabatha to assess the beleaguered Giyani Bulk Water project in the Mopani region.

While many in the province welcomed the president with great jubilation, the forum, an organisation in Limpopo tasked to oversee the day-to-day running of businesses in the province accused Ramaphosa of being opportunistic.

“Why now, Mr President,” asked provincial secretary Siviko Mabunda after Ramaphosa’s meeting with the community.

ALSO READ: Limpopo residents have waited for more than 28 years for water

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“We are baffled that of all the years, months and days, you chose to visit this community on the eve of the ANC national elective conference.”

Mabunda accused the president of trying to use his visit to bag more support from delegates going to the conference.

“It could be the last kick of a dying horse.

“The president might have realised his support for re-election for a second term is fading away. Now he knows his own people, the people of Limpopo, where he has ancestral roots, would not ditch him. That is why he launched a last minute campaign to increase his election margin.”

Mabunda said the people of Giyani spent many years without water.

“Each and every day, the people of Giyani woke up in the wee hours of the morning to queue at fountains, wells and rivers to fetch water, which they had to boil on the fire before they drink or cook.

“Our people competed for dirty water with donkeys and monkeys in the rivers. Where was the president all these times?

“Now, because there are elections, suddenly the president is here. My advice to the people of Giyani is please, don’t listen to Ramaphosa’s empty promises because we don’t drink promises but water,” Mabunda said.

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Addressing the residents, Mchunu said the project had attracted a lot of negative publicity all the years. He said the time was ripe for the community of Giyani and its 55 intended village to have water on their doorstep.

The project was poised to wrap up early next year.

At the moment, the project was on the level of testing water and the pipes.

“We have completed much of the work that was left. We are now on the stage of testing the pipes, which are now buried in the ground,” said Mchunu to the delighted residents.