SA's water sector 'untransformed'

By Ayanda Mdluli Time of article published May 29, 2020

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Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said this week transformation in the water sector was still a pipe dream, characterised by an outdated water distribution system.

She said black farmers continued to be sidelined from obtaining water rights.

According to Sisulu, white-owned entities with large amounts of land control about 75% of all water rights, a situation which had stifled the progress of black farmers and other agricultural enterprises over the last two decades.

“The water sector is extremely untransformed and there is an uneven distribution of water. The nature of this problem is both historical and capital.

"Historical, because we were shoved away by the apartheid system to the driest and most arid parts of the world If you look at the former Bantustans, there is no water in those areas. This is why we had to build dams to make sure that we get the water there,” she said.

Minister of Water, Sanitation and Human Settlements, Lindiwe Sisulu. File photo: Simphiwe Mbokazi/ African NewsAgency (ANA)

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“People in rural areas are still without water, others are still unable to get water because there are people who have the capital to buy the land.They dam the land and then have rights to the water.

"If you look at the register of water rights, about 75% of it goes to white people, while black farmers are still struggling to access water rights. Part of cleaning up the department is ensuring that there is an equitable distribution of water.” 

The Mercury

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