2018-03-08 06:00

DA councillor in the region, George Henderson, said the party took the decision because it feels that the region cannot carry on having “continuous” water supply interruptions under Ugu.

“The northern areas of the municipality have not had a single day without any disruption to their water supply. We can’t carry on like this. Umgeni Water, which is a highly competent organisation, could assist in managing our bulk water supply while Ugu works to fix all its infrastructure and other issues,” said Henderson.

In an official report to the Ugu Municipal Council Committee, municipal manager D.D. Naidoo said the municipality’s grants are “overcommitted” and funding is a “challenge”. Naidoo said the 2015 salt-water supply was due to the drought and low dam levels making the salinity at the abstraction point “unpleasantly” high.

He said a long-term solution to this would require R54 million. However, an alternative method which included the construction of a berm to control the flow of water upstream, was used.

Naidoo said that the December 2016 interruption was due to a lack of adequate infrastructure and while the new Margate/ Ramsgate pipeline has alleviated the situation to a certain extent, R89 million is required for the Port Edward pipeline. Of the 2017 interruptions, Naidoo said an additional pipeline from the Bhobhoyi plant to Umzimzulu reservoir is required and that is being costed.

“The financial implications of such a takeover must be carefully considered. Any investment in infrastructure will result in such costs being added to the cost of water through a levy.

“Any injection of capital by an external service provider will be recovered from the consumer,” said Naidoo, adding that the matter will have to be discussed with the Department of Labour due to the staff implications.


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