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South Africa to Propose Water Transformation Bill, Sisu...

Newsdeck

Newsdeck

South Africa to Propose Water Transformation Bill, Sisulu Says

Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu, opening the Council of Ministers Meeting of Indian Ocean Rim Association. Durban, KZN. Picture byline: Jacoline Schoonees, 2 November 2018
By Bloomberg
16 Jul 2019 0

South Africa’s water department will propose a bill to eliminate “glaring inequalities” in the industry and draft new conservation regulations.

While the National Water Act sought to transform the sector, “95% of the licensed water volume is still in the hands of white commercial farmers, leaving 5% currently allocated to emerging black farmers,” Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu told lawmakers in Cape Town Tuesday. “As we talk about transformation of land ownership, we should understand that land ownership with no access to water will take us nowhere.”

The country’s mines aren’t complying with their water-license conditions, while non-payment for services “is a perennial problem,” Vandalism and theft is also on the rise, Sisulu said.

In addition, the estimated capital investment requirement is 90 billion rand ($6.5 billion) a year over the next 10 years, compared with an annual investment of 55 billion rand on water infrastructure and sanitation, Sisulu said.

To tackle the problems, the department will review its tendering processes, revive a construction unit that will work with the private sector and establish maintenance task teams “especially in the water treatment and recycling stock.”

All investigations into alleged irregularities and corruption will be stepped up and trhe department will appoint a artner approved by National Treasury to deal with all outstanding reviews, Sisulu said.

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