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The cost of water in South Africa could be set for a dramatic increase, as the Department of Water and Sanitation seek the necessary legal approval to hike-up what they can charge for their services.

That’s according to a government source who spoke to Rapport, revealing that a consultation process is already underway.

Anil Singh, deputy director-general for regulations and compliance at the department told the publication that DWS would seek to increase tariffs by “at least 16.5%”.

That figure is enough to draw a wince from any compliant ratepayer, but things could get even worse for South Africans.

This figure does not account for any proposed rise in municipal rates, either. Meaning that if the department gets their way – it’s possible you could be hit with an increase which tops 20%.

No specific reason has yet been given by DWS as to why they need to pursue such a sharp increase.

But with the general water infrastructure of South Africa feeling the strain –and the likes of Eskom being successful with their proposed tariff changes – it seems that this branch of government is confident of securing a similar outcome.

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