By Ina Cilliers MPL, DA Constituency Head: Merafong:
Learners at three Blyvooruitzicht primary schools are today without water as a result of negligence and a complete disregard for comprehensive planning by both the Merafong Local Municipality and the Gauteng Department of Education.
Ekupakamei Primary, Laerskool Blyvooruitsicht and Rocklands Primary have been switched off because the local Blyvooruitsicht Mine is in the process of liquidation and has failed to pay its municipal accounts.
There is only one water pipeline to the area which feeds the mine and its surrounds.
When Merafong disconnected the water supply to the mine, it effectively disconnected the schools too.
In anticipation of this problem, I brought the matter to the attention of the Gauteng Education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi, in March this year.
I was assured that an agreement with the municipality to ensure water supply to the schools in the area would be concluded before the disconnections took place.
It is now obvious that no such agreement took place.
Schools cannot function without water. It is a basic right that no one should be denied.
I will write to MEC Lesufi and demand that this matter be treated with the upmost urgency.