“We did not vote for water trucks and Jojo tanks”

Taps have been dry in sections of KwaNobuhle in Kariega for nearly two weeks

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Gift of the Givers delivered water for residents in wards 47 and 46 in Kariega on Wednesday afternoon. The two large water trucks were empty within an hour. Photo: Thamsanqa Mbovane

“We did not vote for water trucks and Jojo tanks,” said Tamsanqa Nkevu from Ward 44, KwaNobuhle, in Kariega.

Thousands of homes had been without running water for nearly two weeks.

“If they [the municipal council] are unable to deliver water to our taps, then they should leave this municipality. There is no reason that we should be drinking water from trucks and Jojo tanks,” said Nkevu.

Melumzi Kona, from ward 46, said, “All they [the municipality] will do is send metre readers to charge us for water that we never had.”

The day after GroundUp reported how stroke survivor Sizwe Memela had to pay someone R5 to flush his toilet, Gift of the Givers delivered water to Memela and neighbouring homes, using two large water trucks. Both trucks were emptied in less than an hour by residents of wards 47 and 46. Memela said he was grateful for the water.

Mohammed Yusuf Gangat, Gift of the Givers water coordinator for the Eastern Cape, said, “Water is life. People were really thirsty … We intervened and started on Monday this week, delivering 7,500 litres in one truck. We had to pull in another truck with 6,000 litres of water from Grahamstown as we had exceeded what we expected. We did three trips a day. We will still be around until the matter returns to normal.”

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, in a statement on Wednesday afternoon, promised that water would be restored in 24 to 48 hours. “The water supply to KwaNobuhle was affected by a burst on the bulk water supply pipeline two weeks ago. During this period, water supply was fed to the area via Bloemendal/KwaNobuhle pipeline . However, this was not sufficient.

“Water trucks were deployed and rainwater tanks were filled so that residents could collect water. Repairs to the bulk pipeline were completed.”

The municipality said three of four reservoirs have recovered. “This means that only about one third of the area does not have water supply. The water reticulation system is filling up and it is anticipated that full recovery will occur over the next two days. We apologise for the inconvenience caused.”

TOPICS:  Nelson Mandela Bay water Crisis

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