Trollip assesses 'war on water leaks' in Uitenhage and Despatch

SEPTEMBER 9, 2016

Collaboration between government spheres to deal with the issue of water leaks in Nelson Mandela Bay is one of the critical pillars of the war against water leaks. Together, we have to stop the water wastage, which has seen about 15% of clean water being wasted in local schools through leaks across the City.

This call was made by Nelson Mandela Bay's Executive Mayor, Cllr Athol Trollip, on Thursday when he visited different areas in Uitenhage, including schools where water leaks had been reported. Uitenhage and Despatch have in the past been known to battle with a high level of water leaks, sometimes going unattended for almost a month.

The Executive Mayor announced that drastic measures had already been taken in Uitenhage and Despatch to deal with water leaks.

Through these measures, plumbers stationed in different areas of Nelson Mandela Bay have been deployed to fix water leaks in these two areas over the weekends. This programme is in addition to the normal functions carried out by the NMBM Water Sub-directorate (dealing with water leaks through the NMBM 0800 20 50 50 call centre).

Early this month, Council approved water restrictions. The Municipality is monitoring the situation for the next three months. If the situation does not improve in terms of water consumption/usage, the Municipality will institute stricter restrictions. Although the Executive Mayor commented that it was still too early to see whether water consumption was decreasing or not, he was encouraged by early signs of improvement in Uitenhage and Despatch.

"From what we have seen before, already I see a 'drier' Uitenhage and Despatch. The difference is already visible. We need to do more on public awareness and work closely with schools and the Department of Education. I am pleased that the Department of Education has already indicated its commitment to working with us in this fight," said Executive Mayor Trollip.

In Uitenhage alone, more than 1074 water leaks were fixed over three weekends through the weekend interventions. The Executive Mayor also visited Dalrose Primary School, which had been battling with water leak challenges, as reported to the Municipality.

When Mayor Trollip arrived at the school, one of the major leaks that had caused a dam of water to form on the sports field had already been fixed. However, the Executive Mayor identified a leakage in the valve of the water meter and instructed officials to have this fixed by tomorrow noon.

The site visit is one of many site visits that the current leadership have been undertaking and will continue to do in different programmes, projects and sites across the Nelson Mandela Bay. The intention of these site visit is oversight over the work being done by officials on behalf of the public.

The site visits will also give the leadership an opportunity to see for themselves the work that is being done and to interact with local communities about the projects being undertaken on their behalf.

Caption: Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor, Athol Trollip (left) with Water and Sanitation Senior officials clarifying the challenges of water overflow at Rosedale (Uitenhage) resevior.