With over 25 years as a consulting engineer in the private and public sectors, Lefadi Makibinyane was appointed CEO of Amatola Water in January this year.

As a seasoned board member of Rand Water and a significant tenure as CEO of CESA, Makibinyane has unique insights into the role of water utilities in South Africa, and the sometimes intricate dynamics of crossing the public-private divide in South Africa.

He takes this edition’s Hot Seat with a transformative vision for the future of Amatola Water.

The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) has been changing the game somewhat for water utilities, and has implemented a smart consolidation strategy; how will you go about implementing this at Amatola Water?

I am taking my cue from the DWS, and focusing on the 20-year strategy of reform and realignment. There is a lot of work to be done here in the Eastern Cape.

Of the 12 water boards, there are now 9. Bushbuckridge, for example, was disestablished and is now part of Rand Water.

The idea here is to establish efficiencies in the water boards; the smaller ones really were no longer viable, and the ability to centralise operations in some areas, and the skills within the larger water boards, is a meaningful way of getting the right skills to the rural areas.

My first order of business at Amatola is to…

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