By Vicky Knoetze (MPL), Zuurberg constituency leader:
Water supply to the Sunday’s River Valley will be suspended on 1 December unless outstanding debt of over R1-million is paid to the Lower Sundays River Water User Association by the local municipality.
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It has come to the attention of the Democratic Alliance that the Sundays River Valley Municipality has failed to make payments to the Lower Sundays River Water User Association since July of this year. The outstanding debt amounts to R 1 005 569.45.
The citrus industry in the Sundays River Valley is the second largest contributor to the economy of the Eastern Cape. Restricting or suspending water supply will not only infringe the constitutional right of everyone to have access to sufficient water, it will have a disastrous impact on the jobs of people in Addo, Kirkwood and Paterson.
The Sundays River Municipality has failed to respond to any correspondence from the Lower Sundays River Water User Association since July and has received a final notice to present written representation before Friday (subs: 13 November 2015) with reasons and motivations as to why the Association should not restrict/suspend water supply from 1 December 2015 until the account has been settled in full.
According to the National Water Act this step by the Lower Sundays River Water User Association is well within their rights.
I have written to the MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Fikile Xasa, to intervene to ensure that the account is paid, as a matter of urgency.
In a fair society, service to the people is at the heart of good governance. Victimising the people of the Sunday’s River Valley for the failure of the municipality, is not the best way forward.