By Fred Nel MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs:
Water losses in the City of Johannesburg stands at the second highest in the country, after ANC-run Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality in the Eastern Cape. The city is losing water profusely with non-revenue water losses at a high of close to 50% which amounts to 219 457 million litres of water per annum
This information was obtained via a DA parliamentary question by my colleague, DA Shadow Minister of Water and Sanitation, Nosimo Balindlela MP, to Minister Nomvula Mokonyane.
The reply revealed not only the loss of water in metropolitan municipalities across the country but showed the ANC-governments shortcomings in terms of water management and infrastructure investment.
(Click here to review the reply)
This is in stark contrast to the DA-run City of Cape Town, which lost the least amount of water in the country at 21.1%. This can be ascribed to the clean governance and service delivery focus of DA governments.
A DA government in the City of Johannesburg would address water losses in the city through upgrading the entire water infrastructure. The DA would:
- Implement a water pipeline replacement programme expedited where leakages are worst in the city;
- Set up a 24 hour call centre, which dispatches repair teams that would fix burst pipes and leakages around the clock;
- Install special pressure-reducing valves at key points in the water network in order to reduce water pressure in designated areas;
- Legislate the use of non-potable water for irrigation in the city;
- Install water allocation devices, which ensure that indigent homes use their free allocation;
- Make use of existing pipeline camera technology that detects leaks and faulty water pipes;
- Provide better free-allocation of water, to avoid illegal water connections;
- Ensure that the city sets up a system whereby leaking pipes are completely replaced after a set number of complaints by residents, not simply patched up and maintained;
- Implement punitive tariffs for businesses that overuse water, after negotiated limits are agreed to; and
- Increase mobile water tanker fleets, afforded by immediate cuts in wasteful and fruitless expenditure.
This delivery is possible and the DA has a proven track record in ensuring water losses are kept to a minimum and residents do not bear the brunt of poor service delivery by ANC-governments across the country.