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DWS accelerates Operation Bulela Metsi to address severe water challenges in North West

20th October 2023

By: Natasha Odendaal

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

     

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The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) is accelerating the implementation of Operation Bulela Metsi to enhance access to consistent and reliable water supply in the North West province.

The Operation Bulela Metsi project’s technical task team, established by the Minister and the provincial government in January this year, was mandated to conduct an assessment of the state of water and sanitation services provision in the province and come up with measures to address the challenges and ensure sustainable provision of the services.

One of several mega water projects under the initiative is the construction of the Ikageng 25 megalitres ground reservoir, funded through the Regional Bulk Infrastructure Grant, in the JB Marks local municipality.

The reservoir and the new bulk distribution pipeline, for which the municipality is the water services authority and was appointed as the implementing agent, will supply water to communities in Ikageng Proper; Ikageng Ext 1,4, 5, 9, 12; Potchindustria; Mohadin and the Northern portion of Ikageng Ext 7.

The implementation of the project, which started in January this year and is expected to be completed by July 2024, with more than 100 job opportunities for locals in the pipeline, followed the decommissioning of the Ikageng West reservoirs, which left the Ikageng Proper and Potchindustria networks without any storage capacity.

A new reservoir had to be constructed to meet the required storage capacity, with special care taken to position a new reservoir to ensure that it is not constructed in a dolomite risk zone, the DWS said in a statement issued on Friday.

The successful completion of the reservoir will benefit close to 22 000 households and a population of 94 201.

Further, the reservoir site caters for future developments at Mooibank to the south of the N12, and the platform will be ready to accept additional ground reservoirs, as well as able to accommodate any future developments once the urban edge is extended to the northwest of the reservoir site as proposed in the recent Spatial Development Framework, the DWS continued.

The reservoir construction forms part of the upgrading of the Potchefstroom Water Treatment Works project which comprises six phases, including refurbishment and upgrading the treatment plant, extension of AC pipeline, upgrading of the Ikageng pump station and the construction of a new rising main and bulk distribution pipeline in Ikageng.

The project is one of several being accelerated by the department and other role players, through the Operation Bulela Metsi initiative, to ensure reliable water supply in the province.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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