Petro-chemical giant Sasol says three of its waste incinerators were closed because it struggled to interpret some compliance requirements. This comes after a report by Water and Sanitation showed that Sasol had failed to comply.The City of Ekurhuleni is however resolute that they have not polluted the Vaal river system.

This emerged during the second day of an inquiry into spillage of raw sewage into the river. The Human Rights Commission which is holding the inquiry says there has been a violation of human rights in the crisis.

During day two of the inquiry municipalities insisted that they have clean hands. Ekurhuleni, which was implicated by Emfuleni municipality, proclaims its innocence.

However, the commission would not be taking that at face value. “The city says they do not contribute to the pollution in the Vaal River but we will be conducting a site inspection in Ekurhuleni to make sure we verify these allegations,” says Human Rights Commission’s Buang Jones.

Due to intense industry in Gauteng, pollution is a challenge. Compliance remains an even bigger issue. Sasol failed to comply with some requirements, relating to how they discharge their waste.

The commission continues on Wednesday as the City of Johannesburg and Treasury are expected to testify.