Water ruling: City continues to ignore court

2009-11-25 00:00

THE 49 Zimbabwean refugees who took the Msunduzi Municipality to court for cutting their water supply without notice and won are still battling to get the municipality to comply with the court’s ruling.

As of yesterday, the refugees were still relying on sympathetic neighbours for water hand-outs, despite the delivery of a court order to the municipal offices instructing them to uphold the verdict.

The refugees, who spoke to The Witness yesterday and requested anonymity for fear of victimisation, said their victory in the high court was bitter-sweet because the municipality had made no attempt to communicate with them regarding the way forward.

“Nothing has transpired as yet and they are dragging their feet. Maybe that’s the pace they usually operate in,” said a refugee.

They complained that they were living under terrible conditions, and the lack of water had resulted in poor sanitation inside the house.

A representative of Fakude, Hassim and Associates, the law firm that acted on behalf of the refugees in court, said they represented the applicants pro b ono because they were struggling just to survive.

“They don’t have money. In fact they’ve got nothing. They’re sheltering in this house and just battling to find a day’s meal,” said the representative who declined to be named.

The representative said they are appalled that the municipality has continued to flout the court’s ruling as the Bill of Rights and Water Services Act states that everyone has the right to access basic sanitation along with a basic water supply.

The Witness attempted to get a response from the municipality yesterday, but none was received by the time of going to print.





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