Mchunu accelerates supply of fresh water in Venda, Giyani

Water and Sanitation Minister Senzo Mchunu has assured the community of Vhembe and Mopani District Municipalities that work is underway to resolve outstanding issues and errors that have delayed the provision of water.

The Minister was speaking during his interaction with the communities and municipal stakeholders.

“We are here to address any outstanding issues and they should be resolved within a reasonable timeframe,” he said on Friday.

In addition, he acknowledged the Giyani Water Supply Project, which was meant to supply bulk water to 55 villages, has been marred by headlines of corruption and maladministration.

“I am interested in the laying of pipelines from Nandoni Water Treatment Works to Giyani. This is a new era and we are here to ensure that there is water for people of Vhembe and Giyani.”

The Minister, who was accompanied by Deputy Ministers David Mahlobo and Dikeledi Magadzi, also inspected the Nandoni Water Treatment Works in Venda.

He announced that the work to upgrade it from producing 60 megalitres to 120 megalitres of water has been approved and will resume soon.

Mchunu also reviewed the laying of water pipelines in Mphambo Village.

“We cannot afford to delay the provision of water to the people of Vhembe and Giyani. We are committed to serving our people and today I am making an undertaking that the time starts now. You will get water in your villages,” he vowed.

According to the department, the construction of a 49-km pipeline from Nandoni to Nsami has resumed and Lepelle Northern Water is the implementing agent.

The department said 37% of the construction has been completed, meaning that 27km of pipelines have been installed.

The department also needs a further R498 million to ensure the installation of water pipelines that will benefit the outstanding 55 villages in Giyani still without water.

“The Minister and Deputies acknowledged this and are awaiting the documents that will support the release of such funding. Minister Mchunu emphasised the need to work urgently and with speed while ensuring that no financial and legal prescripts are undermined,” the department said.

An additional R600 million is required to upgrade the Nandoni Water Treatment Works.

“The upgrade will enhance the capacity of the treatment works, raising it from 60 megalitres per to a whopping 120 megalitres per day.”

All this work is meant to ensure the completion of work on the Giyani Bulk Water Supply Project, while ensuring the security of bulk supply.

Meanwhile, the department said Water Services Authorities will be assisted to ensure optimal operation of reticulation infrastructure.

“The cooperative efforts must lead to security of supply for communities and a better life for all.”

Relocation of families

Mahlobo reported on the status of compensation payments to relocate families who were removed when Nandoni Dam was constructed.

He said out of 1 362 beneficiaries, 1 029 have been paid, which leaves an amount of 339 claimants still to be processed.

“This also includes those who have potentially been overpaid or even paid twice.”

According to the statement, out of these 339 outstanding and still being processed, 67 payments are scheduled to be paid by 15 December 2021.

Source: South African Government News Agency