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Gauteng water supply recovering after emergency mitigation measures

Water Tap

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29th September 2023

By: News24Wire

  

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Although the water supply in Gauteng is critical in many areas, there has been an uptick in availability since Water and Sanitation Minister Senzo Mchunu's visit this week. 

After consulting Rand Water, Johannesburg Water and municipalities, Mchunu announced water shifting as a short-term solution to outages.

Johannesburg Water spokesperson Nombuso Shabalala said water shifting was part of the mitigation strategy to improve the supply.

"Water shifting entails extracting a certain amount of water from one supply system that has surplus and moving it into a system that is experiencing a shortage of supply in order to supplement its load," she added.

Johannesburg Water is no stranger to this system, calling it a bypass.

On Tuesday, after a meeting with Johannesburg residents, Mchunu took five points from the meeting to a forum that evening with stakeholders.

The stakeholder meeting involved plans, executions and timelines for implementation to keep the water running.

The points he discussed were:

  • Accountability, as the "community should hold the government responsible".
  • Water shifting.
  • Constructing and refurbishing reservoirs, including temporary ones to alleviate pressure on existing reservoirs.
  • A timeline from Rand Water of when an extra 150 megalitres would be pumped.
  • Conservation of water.

The results of the meeting were meant to be communicated on Thursday.

The press briefing was postponed as Mchunu had another meeting and plans he asked Rand Water and the municipalities to come up with had not yet been delivered, said department spokesperson Kamogelo Mogotsi.

Meanwhile, a trip at the Mapleton pump station in Boksburg, Ekurhuleni, on Monday resulted in water outages in Pretoria East.

In a statement, Rand Water said the incident resulted in a decline of reservoirs, which affected the Tshwane, Ekurhuleni, Govan Mbeki, Lesedi and Thembisile Hani local municipalities.

Prior to this, an outage at the Zuikerbosch water treatment plant on 19 and 21 September affected the Hartebeeshoek reservoir, which supplies the Soshanguve, Ga-Rankuwa, Mabopane and Winterveldt areas, which ran empty in the process.

The system was recovering before the outage on Monday.

The outage at the Zuikerbosch water treatment plant also impacted the water supply to the City of Ekurhuleni.

The Vosloorus Extension 9, Primrose, and Russell Road reservoirs as well as the Windsor and Churchill pump stations were affected.

These areas have since recovered.

Deputy Water and Sanitation Minister David Mahlobo was in Ekurhuleni to discuss the Tsakane water outage, which has been ongoing.

The weeks-long outage resulted in a strike last week.

Mahlobo said Ekurhuleni and Rand Water's technical teams must forge a plan to resolve the issue.

Edited by News24Wire

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