In the face of disaster government fails SA

2015-11-12 06:00

THE Mail and Guardian declares that “the government has failed South Africa as political meddling, poor infrastructure management and inadequate contingency planning leave the country beyond drought repair” and that “our water-agriculture nexus was broken by the same kind of political paralysis”.

Dr Rishigen Viranna of the Democratic Alliance tells us that of R353 million allocated for drought relief, 98% of the funds have not been used for the purpose in spite of the DA’s timeous pleading for contingency planning. International experts warn that due to Africa’s “lowest ability” to cope with the very serious prognosis for climate change on the continent, we will be among the worst sufferers.

It is deceitful of authorities to imply that water engineers are not capable of anticipating and averting disasters such as that which has now befallen us. With educated foresight, expertise, planning and funding, this catastrophe need not have arisen.

Admittedly, we are in the throes of climate change exacerbated by a severe El Niño, but we have survived worse, pre-ANC, without loss of drinking water. Of course water consumption has increased, together with massive waste, but it should go without saying that a competent government would have planned and provided for the former and minimised the latter.

E. Rangasamy has posed a number of pertinent questions in his letter (5 November) to which we the public are entitled to answers. But answers are never forthcoming from our municipality which, like the government, hides its incompetence and negligence behind waves of subterfuge.

In the face of a disaster that sees poor people facing serious health hazards by drinking from dangerously polluted rivers and the unprecedented damage to all industry and quality of life, instead of an apology, Lennox Mabaso (Department of Local Government, KZN) asserts that “the matter has been blown out of proportion”, Lungile Cele (general manager, Ugu Water Services), “you can drink it”, and France Zama (Ugu senior manager, mayoralty and communication), “we will continue with the supply of water as demanded by our mandate” and “we will not be deterred by any elements in meeting this constitutional obligation”.

Steven van Staden

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.