BY KATLEGO MOKAILA
There is an uneven distribution of rainfall across South Africa. The country experiences alternating periods of droughts and floods which affect the amount of water available across the country. Water losses from municipal reticulation systems, vandalism, illegal water connections, physical leakages, high pollution of rivers and streams, lack of a visible campaign to raise awareness about the scarcity of water, impact negatively on access to water.
Surely this is a clear indication of a common drive that binds us as South Africans to work together in sustaining and protecting our water supply. Water belongs to the nation – it is only with the nation’s participation that we can properly manage this precious and scarce resource.
South Africans voting on 03 August 2016 meant taking a stand and exercising our democratic rights. Some say if you didn’t vote then you must not complain anymore. It is not true because we still have basic constitutional rights despite the decisions we make, but let us use our democratic rights in a positive, informed and productive and use correct communication channels instead of fighting water with fire. For us to have service delivery, we must be active as well.
Voting aside, service delivery is not possible without transparent public participation and that is why the Department of Water and Sanitation has established water and sanitation forums that speak for and are part of the community. They are in constant liaison with councillors and municipalities throughout the country.
To ensure that the water business is well represented, DWS, through the Councillor Development Programme (CDP) also aims to induct councillors into the water service delivery value chain with the main focus of empowering councillors for informed, wise decision-making; ensuring that water services and resources issues are prioritised for the greater good of the communities while also ensuring that the local community is consulted on its water services needs and priorities as part of the IDP process.
The Department in collaboration with SALGA has in the past engaged councillors on water service delivery issues. The department therefore appeals to the public to continue using water sparingly and to report any water challenges or theft of water infrastructure to the municipality or call the departmental toll free no: 0800 200 200 including the sms line 45174.
Note: This piece was written by Water and Sanitation department provincial spokesperson, Katlego Mokaila on her personal capacity. Issues raised here does not necessary represent Taung DailyNews nor Water and Sanitation Department.