Mchunu calls for quicker turnaround time for completing projects

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Water and Sanitation Minister, Senzo Mchunu, has called on the department’s officials to change the turnaround time for the completion of projects.

“We’ve got to change the narrative. People are saying the department is slow. That is not right. [We] have set plans and timelines [and]… then not meet your own expectations,” Mchunu said.

Mchunu made the call during a Provincial Working Session in Northern Cape on Monday.

Accompanied by Deputy Ministers David Mahlobo and Dikeledi Magadzi, Mchunu will during the three-day working session, which started on Monday, meet with Northern Cape Premier, Dr Zamani Saul and the provincial executive to assess the status of water and sanitation in the province.

During his first working session on Monday, Mchunu met with the department officials, including the provincial government, whose delegation was led by Saul and Sedibeng Water Board.

Saul said the meeting with the Minister was timely.

Saul said that water sources are not necessarily a problem but it is infrastructure functionality.

Sedibeng Water Board Acting Chairperson, Sphetho Siyengo, said the biggest challenge for the organisation is the recovery of money owed by municipalities, [which] makes it difficult for the board to perform its duties.

“The challenge is that these institutions [we] serve, owe us R7 billion,” he said.

However, Siyengo commended the Premier, who has been the middleman between the organisation and municipalities, to ensure payment from the municipalities.

Vaal Gamagala Water Supply Scheme 

On Tuesday morning, Mchunu, accompanied by Mahlobo, led a site visit to the Vaal Gamagala Water Supply Scheme to assess the state of the plant.

The project aims to replace an existing pipeline to meet current and future demand by its users.

During the visit, Mchunu and Mahlobo were given a tour of the plant and updated on the water quality and the mechanics of the plant.

The main users of the water from the scheme include mines, various municipalities and the Agricultural sector. The scheme also benefits 5 958 households.

Mchunu, Mahlobo and Magadzi, the department’s Director-General, Sean Phillips, will also hold an engagement with Water Services Authority. – 

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