In an ongoing court application that was launched back in 2018, the High Court of South Africa ordered that the Minister of Water and Sanitation, Senzo Mchunu, file an affidavit outlining all the measures taken for Vaal River Intervention.This is in terms of Section 63 of the Water Services Act, 1997. The agreement was made an order of court and the notice thereof was given on the 26th of June 2023. The Minister of Water and Sanitation is cited as a Respondent. The main court application, which was filed by Save The Vaal Environment, a Non-Governmental Organisation, concerns “the discharge of raw or inadequately treated sewerage by Emfuleni Local Municipality from its wastewater care and management system into the Rietspruit River and/or the Klip River and/or the Vaal River and/or the Vaal River Catchment Area”. The matter has not been finally ruled on by the court.
Section 63 Vaal Intervention, one of the Ministry’s priority projects in Gauteng, includes the upgrading of water infrastructure, refurbishment, operations and maintenance, sustainability, water conservation, water demand management, and advocacy within the Vaal area.This is meant to deal with urgent matters relating to the security of supply and more urgently, matters relating to the pollution of the Vaal River, and the enhancement of capacity for the embattled Emfuleni Local Municipality. Rand Water, as the Implementing Agent, was formally appointed on the 5th of October 2021. Minister Mchunu will be filing a detailed affidavit, containing amongst others, progress updates on the various elements of the Intervention.