KZN farmers hardest hit by drought

2015-11-18 21:17


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Durban - The KwaZulu-Natal farming community has thus far been the hardest hit during the national drought crisis, the provincial cabinet said.

It was announced on Wednesday that the preliminary assessment of the extent of damage to the province, especially to livestock and crops, stood at above R400m when the crisis initially hit last year, the cabinet said in a statement.

The statement comes after Umgeni Water said it would restrict water to iLembe District, Semcorp and parts of eThekwini Metro to 50% bulk water supply as Hazelmere Dam levels dropped to a dangerously low 25.8%.

KwaZulu-Natal's total drought relief allocation from national government to date is R443.7m. Of this R172.2m has been spent on the purchase of 45 water tankers and the delivery of water services by municipalities.

Cabinet further said that about 40 000 heads of cattle had been lost thus far.

“Despite the sporadic rainfall in some parts of KwaZulu-Natal, it is mostly outside its catchment areas. The remaining water resources are only expected to last several weeks. As a result of this, stringent rationing is being rolled out to the affected communities.

“Water restrictions have been imposed on all users of these water systems. These restrictions are increasing in intensity as the dam levels continue to drop. Despite all these efforts, only partial success has been achieved in reducing the level of water consumption from the most affected dams.”

Speaking to News24, iLembe District Mayor Welcome Mdabe confirmed that it was likely that people would have to endure water shedding of up to eight hours a day.

“We have been battling with this issue for quite some time and it is not getting any better. We have partnered with people in the community and are trying hard to maintain water tankers and boreholes.

“The tankers are however very expensive costing us around R4 000 to R5 000 per day for just one. We will be making a joint statement next week with Umgeni Water to discuss logistics of distributing our now 50% supply.”

EThekwini Metro was yet to respond to queries on their plans to distribute the reduced water supply.

Read more on:    durban  |  weather  |  drought

Join the conversation! 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.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.


Man scores date with tennis superstar after Twitter bet

It’s a modern day Cinderella story, but one American man took ‘shoot your shot’ seriously in 2017.


You won't want to miss...

6 myths about male cancer
Who are the highest paid models of 2017?
10 gorgeous plus-sized models who aren't Ashley Graham
5 top leg exercises for men
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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 network.


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.