Unfinished sanitation projects endanger Joburg communities

John Moodey MPL

Provincial Leader

A Diepsloot Grade 4 pupil recently tragically lost his life in a ditch dug by the City of Johannesburg Water officials. Incomplete projects are a great risk to communities as delayed completion leads to children playing in the abandoned project sites and endangering their lives.

In my constituency of Orange Farm, south of Johannesburg, an unfinished sewerage pipe has been left uncovered for four months and poses a similar safety risk and health hazard to the community. The stench is also, understandably, quite unbearable.

Governance failures like this are hardly surprising when the Gauteng Local Government Department only connected 2 016 of the 6 502 intended sites to basic water and sanitation. The latest annual report indicates that the failure to complete these projects were due to the late appointment of contractors.

Such inefficiencies reflect government’s disregard for the health and safety of our people. In this instance the City of Johannesburg seemingly does not care that the safety of the community is affected by their negligence.

With incidences of injury or death of people due to incomplete projects, government must be held accountable.
Until politicians and officials are held personally accountable and not the state, which in any case pays out public funds when sued, such practices of negligence will continue.