The improvement and completion of several water infrastructure projects was recently highlighted by Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Minister, Jeff Radebe.
Following a recent Cabinet meeting, Radebe informed media that the construction of the Ncora Water Treatment Works and Kalahari East to Mier pipeline has been completed, and also added that the Jozini Pongolapoort and Gariep Dam are in the final stages of construction.
While local municipalities are grappling with access to sufficient funding to improve existing water infrastructure and lay new pipes altogether, progress has been made in some cities around the country.
Rural areas which have no access to running water also remain a high priority around the country.
Radebe said that a total of 29,626 households gained access to piped water between October and December 2016.
He said that in addition to this, 98 water development and 51 sanitation projects have also been completed. The completion of these projects provided 611,360 households with access to sanitation services.
Through the Rural Household Infrastructure Grant, which has been implemented to eradicate the country’s sanitation backlog, Radebe noted that 20,599 households were also assisted.
He added that about 1,405 bucket toilet systems were replaced with adequate sanitation services in formally established settlements.
Radebe also highlighted the efficient use of water for domestic and commercial use, and emphasised caution in the Western Cape especially.
The minister said engagements between the national and provincial sector departments as well as municipalities are ongoing in an effort to minimise the impact of the drought.