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Billions spent on water projects, but Limpopo villages still run dry



Inhabitants of limpopo have argued for the Minister of Water and Sanitation, senzo mchunu to explain why they still drink dirty water, which is also used by dogs and donkeys, while the government spent $3.4 billion on the overflowing De Hoop Dam in Sekhukhune.

In the meantime, the R3.3 billion bulk water supply project in Giyani remained unfinished.

Communities in Giyani are being hit hard by drought and want the Minister of Water Boards and the Ministry of Water and sanitation officials why so many projects in the province remained unfinished, despite a chunk of money being put into the projects.

ALSO READ: Mchunu assesses water supply and sanitation in Limpopo

They also wanted the minister to ask his subordinates and officials why the residents continued to get thirsty even though most of the dams in the province were full.

Thomo Nkadimeng of the larger Fetakgomo Tubatse in Sekhukune said his community cheered when the government built the De Hoop Dam in mining-rich Burgersfort.

“But many years after its completion, the $3.4 billion dam is helping the local population with nothing.

“Instead of supplying water to the local population, especially the sprawling villages around the dam, it continues to Polokwane and other towns, leaving the villagers high and dry,” he said.

“Worse… 49 neighborhoods making up 169 villages are now befriending baboons and donkeys in rivers for domestic water, including cooking and drinking. This is a disgrace and a threat to our constitutional democracy.”

According to Spoon Northern Watera state water company responsible for the supply of bulk water in limpopothe drought relief from Giyani, or Nandoni to Nsami, the 2021-22 project allocation was R61.34 million.

The 2021-22 Giyani water service project was awarded R160 million and the Babanana project R120.6 million.

READ MORE: Polokwane faces water crisis ‘due to operational challenges’

Lepelle Northern Water Board spokesman Yolande Nel said the utility was working on the Moutse drought relief project, with a budget of R143 million, the Giyani drought relief, with a budget of R700 million, the Giyani water service project, with R520 million in the treasury and the Babanana- project that was still not completed.

“The total amount required for the completion of the Giyani bulk water project is R450 million and the completion date is expected to be December 2022,” said Nel.

The Moutse drought relief project is 75% complete.

According to the general secretary of the Bolshevik party Seun Mogotji yesterday, the supplied water tanks were no longer durable; their stands were broken and people still had to drink dirty river water with wild animals.

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