The Minister of Water and Sanitation, Senzo Mchunu, and the Executive Mayor of the City of Tshwane, Cllr. Cilliers Brink agreed on a proposal for a joint project to resolve the current water challenges in Hammanskraal.The agreement was reached in a meeting held to find solutions to address the water challenges in that area following an outbreak of cholera. In light of the cholera outbreak, the Minister and the Executive Mayor have agreed that it is imperative that the water and sanitation challenges in Hammanskraal be dealt with as a matter of national urgency. A joint task team between the Department and the City of Tshwane has been formed and it oversees the interventions that are currently being made to solve the problem of depreciating water quality of Temba Water Treatment Works as well as an action plan to rehabilitate and upgrade of the Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Works to the required production of drinking water quality standards. The Department of Water and Sanitation has estimated the cost of rehabilitation and upgrade of the Rooiwal WWTW and upgrade of the Temba WTW to be R6 billion over the next four financial years.
However, the Mayor and the City have indicated that the City does not have the capacity on its own to address the water and sanitation challenges, nor does it have sufficient funds to address the challenges timeously on its own. As a result, the DWS and the CoT will engage the National Treasury to source funds that will supplement the existing funds to ensure the total budget required is secured.Minister Mchunu has expressed his satisfaction with the agreed proposals and has called for both DWS and CoT to look for one credible model to resolve the problems in Hammanskraal “There are historical problems that have contributed to this cholera outbreak, and today we have agreed to close that chapter and to work on finding solutions. We will be working on the processes of ensuring that the projects get underway, and that includes issues of funding and timeframes allocated to the project. We are fully committed to ensuring that Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Works is fixed, once and for all”, said Minister Mchunu. Cllr Cilliers Brink has reiterated the same sentiments and has also indicated that the City of Tshwane has agreed to the proposal for a joint project, and to form a partnership with the DWS to solve the long-standing issue of the under-capacitated Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Works. “We have now reached the end of a long line of failures and excuses, and whatever has failed in the past must be abandoned and has now been replaced by the partnership between the City and the Department of Water and Sanitation. The City will source additional funding and I believe this is a first step for an end to the failures, excuses and squabbles of the past” Cllr Brink said.