Accelerate completion of water projects in Waterberg district, says Mahlobo

10th May 2023 By: Natasha Odendaal - Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

Accelerate completion of water projects in Waterberg district, says Mahlobo

Water and Sanitation Deputy Minister David Mahlobo urged mayors and municipal managers in the Waterberg district to fast-track water and sanitation projects in Limpopo to ensure access to water for communities.

Speaking during a multi-stakeholder water and sanitation engagement session on May 9 in Mokopane, he also pleaded with municipalities to appoint contractors and service providers with technical capabilities and experience.

“One of the reasons behind non-completion of projects is lack of capacity, manipulation and exploitation. We are aware of the phenomenon of criminals that threaten to stop projects and demand 30% without doing any job, we must say no to criminalities and lawlessness,” Mahlobo said.

He further expressed concern over the non-functionality of water treatment works (WTWs) in the Waterberg district, noting that the nine WTWs, with the total design capacity of 244.2 Mℓ/d, were currently producing an average of 74.5 Mℓ/d, or 30.5% of capacity.

“There are management problems in the technical areas of the municipalities; operations and maintenance is not done properly at our water infrastructures,” he continued.

In addition, he urged municipalities to fix sewerage spillages, some of which were further polluting water resources.

During the engagement, which discussed the state of water and sanitation in the province and debated decisions about the implementation of water projects that were aimed at delivering water, Mahlobo outlined the progress of ongoing projects, including those that were completed and some that were yet to start.

Among the projects discussed were public-private partnership projects Olifants River Water Resource Development Programme and Olifants Management Model, which aimed to fast-track raw and potable bulk water infrastructure to supply the Sekhukhune and Mokgalakwena districts.

“Phases 1, 2A of De Hoop dam and 2C bulk line from De Hoop to Steelpoort are completed, the remaining works are the Phase 2B 70 km pipeline, three pump-stations and three reservoirs from Flag Bashielo dam to Mogalakwena,” he said, adding that Phase 2 of the project involved the development of additional water resource infrastructure comprising the De Hoop dam on the Steelpoort river and a bulk distribution system.

Further discussions touched on the upcoming Moretele North Bulk Water Supply Scheme, which is still in the teething stage and will be funded by the Department of Water and Sanitation’s (DWS's) Regional Bulk Infrastructure Grant.

Traditional leaders, Limpopo provincial leadership of the DWS, mayors, municipal managers and ward councillors from the local municipalities within the Waterberg district, including Lephalale, Bela Bela, Modimolle-Mookgophong, Thabazimbi and Mokgalakwena, attended the engagement.