IT’S official - Msunduzi Municipality’s water ranks as one of the best in the country after being awarded Blue Drop status for the third consecutive year.
Launched in 2008 by the minister of water affairs, the award focuses on drinking water and water management and scores the competence and skills capacity of technical staff, proof of adequate maintenance on water infrastructure, efficient water use, to name a few.
The initiative was launched to encourage local municipalities to improve their water quality management and sanitation services because access to safe drinking is often inadequate in developing countries.
Each criteria is weighted and scored by independent assessors from the Department of Water and Sanitation. Blue Drop certification is awarded to municipalities that score higher than 95% in all criteria. Msunduzi scored 97.97%. This shows that the water is above average.
Melanie Veness, chief executive officer of the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business said that water is a precious commodity and it is critical that water supplies are conserved and protected.
“In many first-world countries one cannot even consider drinking the tap water. Sometimes we forget just how fortunate we are. Pietermaritzburg has always had exceptional water, which is why whisky was distilled in the city.
“Brenden Sivparsad and his team at Msunduzi Municipality have done a sterling job maintaining our water quality, and they must be congratulated and thanked for their efforts. Well done to all concerned,” she said.
Msunduzi now has Blue Drop with Platinum status because it has achieved its drinking water quality summa cum laude for three consecutive assessment periods.
“This achievement is only possible through the cohesion and dedication of officials in the water department, environmental health section, our management, political leadership and our bulk water suppliers, Umgeni Water.
“It is good to know that in pursuit in ensuring that all citizens have an adequate supply of this scarce, basic service, we are definitely not compromising on the quality of water being delivered. In delivering quantity we are ensuring quality is maintained.
“I would therefore like to reiterate to all our residents that they can rest assured that our drinking water quality and procedures are of the highest standards and we intend maintaining this prestigious status,” said Nqobile Madonda, acting marketing and communications manager at the municipality.