Government says it is working hard to come up with mechanisms to ensure that the water crisis in the Western Cape is addressed in a best possible manner.  Minister of Water and Sanitation Nomvula Mokonyane told journalists in Parliament that a number of government projects such as desalination of water have already began in earnest.

Mokonyane says her department has joined hands with various stakeholders including the private sector to come up with a collective effort.

“We are reviewing the water use licences for the water waste management and water plants so that we can re-use.  There are four things that we need to focus on, the first one is around the behavioural change, and it’s around the re-use of water and the exploration of water ground in a responsible manner.  It is about compliance with restrictions as they are being introduced, it is also looking around at other methods that can be introduced to reduce the levels of water leaks in some of our own areas,” says Mokonyane.

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille on Monday said she wrote to President Jacob Zuma asking that he declare the water crisis a national disaster. This after dam levels dropped to 27.6%.

Zille met with Disaster Management Teams from the province and nationally to co-ordinate a disaster plan.

Zille said disaster teams – including the SANDF and the police – have been holding weekly meetings since the beginning of last year as the drought tightened its hold on the province. She stressed that over 50 % of the residents of Cape Town are failing to keep to the water restrictions.

She added that even with the augmentation schemes of desalination and aquifers added to the system, there still won’t be enough water.

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