DA calls on HRC to investigate Embalenhle sewage crisis

Anthony Benadie MPL

Provincial Leader – Mpumalanga

Residents of Embalenhle near Secunda are forced to conduct their daily lives in absolute filth and sewage spills, exposing them to unnecessary health risks and the very real possibility of a large scale outbreak of cholera, dysentery or typhoid fever.

As part of our national Blue Blitz campaign, the DA visited Embalenhle shared the untold story of the DA with residents, and how we could change their lives. We were absolutely appalled at the harrowing conditions that people are forced to live under. Raw sewage flows in the streets, and people have to zig-zag along the roadside to avoid it, despite the entire sewerage system recently being upgraded and overhauled.

Click here for video clips of the spills, and click here to view pictures of the streets of Mandela Section.

In 2006 construction commenced on R49 million sewerage reticulation network, yet since its completion in 2009, sewer blockages, spillages and malfunctioning pump stations have become the norm, not the exception, due to shoddy workmanship, corner cutting and downright profiteering.

Following independent investigations and audits, it was recommended to council to hold contractors liable and force them to repair the situation at their own costs, as well as to take disciplinary actions against certain Govan Mbeki and Gert Sibande officials.

Council’s failure to take remedial action (for reasons unknown) exposes residents to a host of health risks, and the DA believes that its failure to act violates people’s human rights, and is an affront to their human dignity.

To this end we will request the Human Rights Commission to investigate the council for possible human rights violations, and will present our photos, videos and documents as evidence.

Every day the dignity and quality of life of the people of Embalenhle are affected in the worst way, and this could have been avoided had the ANC been prepared to act against maladministration and possible corrupt activities within its own ranks.

The DA will use every avenue at our disposal to ensure that those responsible are brought to book, and that this mess is rectified.

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