New Water Tribunal members appointed

22nd August 2023

By: Natasha Odendaal

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor


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Nine members for South Africa’s new Water Tribunal have been appointed.

The Water Tribunal is an independent body formed to hear water-related appeals against the Department of Water and Sanitation or any responsible authority in line with the National Water Act (NWA).

Established in terms of Section 146(1) of the NWA, 1998 (Act No. 36 of 1998) as amended, the Water Tribunal will oversee appeals against the decisions taken, such as declined water-use licence applications; adverse decisions on transfers of water-use rights or during the processing of water-use authorisations applications; directives issued; and claims by a catchment management agency for the recovery of costs.

The nine members, including chairperson Advocate Puseletso Loselo and deputy chairperson Unathi Mbeki, have been appointed for a four-year term.

The other members include Advocate Nomusa Lekgetho; Rainy Disebo Mashitisho; Maxwell Sirenya; Khuliso Mudau; Peter-John Veldhuizen; Lahlane Malema; and Emmanuel Mpanza.

In terms of the NWA, the Water Tribunal has jurisdiction in all provinces of the country and may conduct hearings anywhere within South Africa, said Water and Sanitation Minister Senzo Mchunu in a statement issued on Tuesday.

Appeals and applications to the Water Tribunal take the form of a rehearing, written or oral evidence and all parties are given opportunity to make their own representation, question or be questioned in terms of Rule 7 of the Water Tribunal Rules.

The judgment is then sent to the office of the Registrar for publication on the Tribunal website.

He implored the newly appointed chairperson of the Water Tribunal to fast-track the finalisation of the amendment of rules governing the processes of structure, as it was one of the main contributors to delays in concluding matters before the Tribunal.

“We are dependent on you to work with us in continuing to clean the image and the perception that the department had garnered over time – that of tardiness, delays, inefficiencies and corruption by promoting good governance, zero tolerance to corruption and, ultimately, making sure that the country occupies a good space and lead in the continent, and globally, as a sector,” he said.

“We have been working very hard to reposition this department to be where it is now and cannot be seen to be going backwards,” Mchunu concluded.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter




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