City of Cape Town Mayor, Patricia de Lille Photo: Bheki Radebe/African News Agency/ANA.

CAPE TOWN - "We can no longer ask people to stop wasting water. We must force them," the City of Cape Town Mayor, Patricia de Lille said on Thursday, as the day after "Day Zero".

De Lille said that the City had listened to the comments of thousands of residents asking for fairness. In response to this, the Council will on Friday be voting on a punitive tariff that will charge residents exponentially higher rates for water usage above 6 000 litres per month.

De Lille also revealed that the majority of residents do not seem to care, and at this point it's assumed that the Capetonians will not change their behaviour. This increases the likeliness of facing Day Zero on the 21 of April 2018.

"I will personally fight to ensure that the proposed punitive tariff exempts those who are using less than 6 000 litres per month," the mayor said.

Here is the difference between the current and the proposed punitive tariffs:

Consumption per month Current tariffs - total household water bill New tariff - total household water bill
6 000 litres R28.44 R145.98
10 500 litres R109.50 R390.82
20 000 litres R361.06 R1 536.28
35 000 litres R1 050.04 R6 939.57
50 000 litres R2 888.81 R20 619.57
Source: City of Cape Town


The City recently proposed that a drought charge is needed to make up the deficit in the City’s revenue which emanates from residents’ water savings and paying significantly less for water and sanitation.

It should be good news to Cape Town farmers to hear that the City's proposed drought charge is likely to be scrapped out, as they argued that the drought charge shouldn't affect them because they are using borehole water not municipal water for their production.


"The proposed Drought Charge is likely to be dropped after a massive outcry from Capetonians that it was unfair. I understand that response and it has personally been a tough lesson for the City. I just want you to know that the City proposed the charge because we wanted to keep delivering important and essential services during this crisis. I wanted to continue making Cape Town a city that delivers opportunities for all. We are now going to have to make deep cuts to important projects," De Lille said.

The City has announced that it will be moving to level 6B restrictions with a new limit of 50 litres per person per day to make up for the many months of missing the 500 million litres per day collective consumption target. 

"The new restrictions will come into effect on 1 February 2018," De concluded.