Who is playing the numbers game?

2017-04-26 06:00
PHOTO: Chris DottPeekaboo - I see you - under the road an incomplete jacked pipe covered in bongabonga, wattle seedlings and black jack, etc.

PHOTO: Chris DottPeekaboo - I see you - under the road an incomplete jacked pipe covered in bongabonga, wattle seedlings and black jack, etc.

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CHECKING out the Craigieburn pipeline on a number of websites revealed some interesting facts.

For instance in 2016 the Minister of Water and Sanitation, Mrs N.P. Mokonyane, responded to questions raised by an MP in Parliament as follows:

• budgeted cost was R203 802 607 for the 35km pipeline which had started on 24 March, 2015;

• project not completed due to the "poor performance of the three contractors" appointed;

• in the written reply given on 9 September, 2016 the minister said: “it will take about 11 weeks to complete the outstanding scope of the works”;

• cost to date (September 2016) R79 493 188 - total estimated cost R138 647 000.

However, it would seem that someone in the department and also in Umzinyathi District Municipality is playing the numbers game.

Early in March this year, a Department of Water and Sanitation spokesperson claimed that the pipeline was 40% complete at the cost of just R83 million - even though the two newly appointed contractors have just started on the 25.5km stretch.

A third contractor is in the process of being appointed to complete the 10.7km stretch from the water treatment plant. Because of the original shoddy workmanship about one third of the pipes will have to be lifted (or dug out), cleaned of sand content and hopefully still be in good enough condition to be relaid on the 10.7km line.

But (again) last year a spokesperson for Umzinyathi District Municipality stated publicly that the original estimate of R283 million had escalated to R489 million, excluding R6.6 million paid by the Department to Umzinyathi to fast forward the project to be completed by September last year.

But (again) there is some more positive news - look carefully along the pipeline and you will see positive signs of activity with the machines and personnel of the two new contractors - Icon Construction and Esor Construction.

Could it actually be September 2017?

Anyone out there like to confirm this, and also the actual final cost of this pipe dream.

Join the conversation!

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