DA lodges complaint with SAHRC over the water crisis in Gauteng

Issued by Solly Msimanga MPL – Official Leader of the Opposition-Gauteng
31 Oct 2022 in News

Many Gauteng residents have not had proper access to water on a daily basis since load-shedding was implemented a month ago. For one family living in Coronationville, this basic human right to access water turned into tragedy when their 13-year-old son was knocked down by a car while collecting water. Today, the Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng has lodged a complaint to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) in Braamfontein regarding the current water crisis in Gauteng.

See the complaint here.

See pictures here, here and here

Rand Water has been calling on our residents to use water sparingly, yet during our recent oversight inspection of the pumping station and water reservoir in Eikenhof, we discovered that there is a water leak right outside their premises.

Access to water is a basic human right and this right is currently being infringed on by Rand Water which is throttling supply to various reservoirs and pumping stations in the province. Access to this right should not become dangerous, and our residents pay for a service that they expect to be delivered without interruption.

Furthermore, Rand Water’s license to purify and supply water has not been upgraded. This is despite Gauteng’s population growing at a very high rate. This clearly shows that they are not planning to improve access to water as a human right.

On 17th October 2022, the DA wrote to President Cyril Ramaphosa, the Minister of Water and Sanitation, Senzo Mchunu, the Premier of Gauteng, Panyaza Lesufi and the MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA), Mzi Khumalo, proposing that an intergovernmental task team be established to look into the electricity and water crisis in Gauteng.

See letter here.

To date, we have only received acknowledgement of our letter from The Presidency. The seven days in which we expected a response has now passed and it is clear that this current national and provincial government is not interested in solving the electricity and subsequent water crisis in the province.

We urge our residents to adhere to the Stage two water restrictions that have been put in place by Rand Water.

The DA will be closely monitoring the progress of the investigation by the SAHRC, as this issue is extremely serious. Access to water should not become dangerous and we need the inter-governmental task team to be set up immediately.