The Ndlambe Municipality must immediately scrap the outrageous water availability charge to residents.
Residents are currently paying an availability charge of R106,69 per erf per month, even though the municipality has been unable to provide them with a reliable source of water.
Although the Ndlambe Municipality, which includes the towns of Port Alfred and Bathurst, is in the midst of a debilitating drought, it is through the municipality’s own bungling and incompetence that residents are without water.
The municipality has been struggling with water for years, as the Sarel Hayward Dam, which supplies Port Alfred, and the Golden Ridge Dam, which supplies Bathurst, have run dry.
However, it is the municipality’s bungling of a multi-million-rand tender for a reverse osmosis plant that has resulted in many residents now having to rely on water tankers for water to households.
Even these interim measures are woefully insufficient, with water tanks not regularly filled by the municipality’s trucks, forcing some residents to go days without water.
The audacity of the ANC-led municipality to continue charging residents for a service that they are clearly unable to meet, speaks volumes.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Ndlambe Municipality have now submitted a motion to request that the municipality’s water availability charge be scrapped.
The DA has moved that the availability charge be scrapped at the next council meeting, until such time as the municipality can ensure a 27-day supply of water each month.
The quality of the water supplied must also be compliant with the South African National Standard (SANS) 241 Drinking Water Specification – which sets out the minimum requirements for potable water to be considered safe for human consumption.
The DA will not allow the municipality to empty the pockets of our long-suffering residents by charging them for a service that they are not being provided with.