Mangaung Water Crisis: DA lays criminal charges

Annelie Lotriet MP

DA Free State Provincial Chairperson

Yesterday the DA laid criminal charges against the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality’s Municipal Manager, Sibongile Mazibuko, under the Water Services Act (Act 108 of 1997) for failure to comply with the Act’s provisions and its constitutional mandate to ensure safe and sustained water supply to residents.

Bloemfontein’s Northern suburbs was again left without water supply this weekend. This brings the number of complete water disruptions in Mangaung to the fourth incident since September last year.

The DA has also reported the municipalities of 26 Free State towns and the Free State provincial government to the South African Human Rights Commission for failure to uphold its constitutional mandate to ensure safe and sustained water supply to our people.

The metro’s communication manager, Qondile Khedama, laid the blame for the water disruptions at the feet of Mangaung residents, claiming that residents are using far too much water. This is indicative of the ANC’s total disregard for the welfare of our people. The ANC-led metro will continue to thumbsuck excuses for water disruption, but would never accept responsibility for its failure to manage our water resources responsibly.

The real reason for the metro’s water disruptions are that the three water pumps at Maselspoort dam have been dysfunctional since September last year. Only one pump is operational, one was stolen and the other is in disrepair. As a result, the pumping station remains unable to supply enough water to meet the metro’s requirements.

It is evident that the ANC-led government is unable to secure South Africans’ Right to water, not only in the Free State, but across the country.