Government intervenes to resolve KwaXimba water challenges

Friday, February 23, 2024

Water and Sanitation Minister, Senzo Mchunu, has reiterated the department’s commitment to work alongside the eThekwini Municipality and uMngeni-uThukela Water to resolve water-related challenges in KwaXimba.

The Minister, joined by Deputy Minister David Mahlobo, eThekwini Municipality Mayor, Mxolisi Kaunda, and Inkosi Mlaba KwaXimba, held a joint Imbizo at the Inkosi Msinga Sports Centre on Thursday, which aimed to address water provision in KwaXimba ward 1.

The community raised their concerns at the constant interruptions in water supply during a series of protests in recent weeks.

Mchunu said the plans announced to the community during the engagement would ensure longer lasting solutions to water-related matters. 

He said the purpose of the imbizo was to engage the community of KwaXimba to acknowledge the challenges and see how long it is going to take them to resolve it. 

“[As is], you can hardly differentiate now what is being done by eThekwini, what is being done by DWS, [and] what is it being done by uMngeni-uThukela Water, because we are together. The size and the nature here require all of us to work together day in and day out to resolve these problems,” Mchunu said. 

The city has seen challenges in water supply due to a power outage at the Midmar Dam, a source of water supply to the area, and this sparked public outcry. 

The outage affected the entire western aqueduct supplied areas, including Hammersdale, Georgedale, Kloof, Gillits, Tshelimnyama, Dassenhoek, Inanda and Umzinyath, among others.

Another issue was the high demand for water due to the population growth in KwaXimba and surrounding areas. This led to the current allocation not being adequate to the current population and resulting in some areas receiving water through water tankers.

Mchunu announced that as from 19 February 2024, the system has stabilised, with all reservoirs supplied from Western aqueduct now receiving water.

Short and long term plans have been instituted, including the urgent installation and commissioning of a 2 mega litre per day package plant at Mvini, which is expected to be operational by 17 May 2024.

“The design, procurement, installation and commissioning of a 5 Mega litre per day package plant at that will replace the package plant. This plan is anticipated to be concluded by the end of June 2024.

“A long term solution is the construction and commissioning of the Upper Mkhomazi scheme by 2030 to add additional water to the already constructed western aqueduct scheme which is designed to carry 400Mega Litre per day,” Mchunu said. –