Independent Online

Sunday, June 26, 2022

Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterView weather by locationView market indicators

WATCH: Frustrations boil over as oThongathi residents protest after more than 2 months without water

Published Jun 22, 2022

Share

Durban – Since the April floods damaged the Tongaat Water Treatment Plant, oThongathi residents have had no water in their taps for more than two months which has caused anger and frustration.

Last month, after 52 days without water IOL reported that residents took to the streets to protest about the lack of water and the insufficient supply of water tankers.

Story continues below Advertisement

Provincial police spokesperson Constable Thenjiswa Ngcobo, said today’s protest started at 6am after a group of people blockaded Hambanathi Road in oThongathi with burning tyres and stones.

“No damages or injuries have been reported. Police are monitoring the situation,” she said.

Metro police spokesperson Senior Superintendent Geraldine Stevens, said metro police are in attendance.

“The roadways are closed.

Story continues below Advertisement

“They are burning tyres, logs and any debris they can find.

“The situation is volatile at the moment.

“They are awaiting somebody from the City Hall to address the water issues,” said Stevens.

Story continues below Advertisement

Speaking to The Mercury on Wednesday, DA member of the eThekwini municipality executive committee, councillor Yogis Govender, said protesting residents blocked the R102 at the Gopalall Hurbans Road and Walter Reid intersection near Gandhi’s Hill.

Story continues below Advertisement

“The anger and frustration from disgruntled residents are manifesting in a series of protests in the last month,” she said.

She warned that the protest was gaining momentum.

Govender said the DA in eThekwini has repeatedly engaged with the city leadership and officials requesting a fast tracking of contingency plans that have been tabled for the Tongaat water crisis.

She said the Tongaat Waterworks was severely damaged in the April floods and the contract to repair the treatment works has been delayed after an unsuccessful bidder raised an appeal regarding the awarding of the contract.

Govender said this is a serious setback as while the time lines to fix the Tongaat Water Treatment Works was projected to be four to six months, the appeal has suspended the awarding of the contract.

“There has been no communication from eThekwini municipality since the awarding of the contract was placed in dispute,” she said.

Govender added that the municipality has been very slow in dealing with short term measures to compensate for the lack of tap water.

“The reaction is nothing short of a human rights violation.

“For a town of almost 150 000 to 200 000 people, eThekwini water and sanitation unit were fielding a dismal complement of tankers since inception,” she said.

OThongathi residents blocked the R102 to protest about the lack of water supply in the area. Most of the area has had no water since the April floods. Picture: Supplied.

OThongathi residents blocked the R102 to protest about the lack of water supply in the area. Most of the area has had no water since the April floods. Picture: Supplied.

A truck is seen dumping rubbish onto a road during the protest this morning over the lack of water supply. Most of the area has had no water since the April floods. Picture: Supplied.

OThongathi residents burnt tyres at the Fairbreeze traffic lights in protest over the lack of water supply in the area. Most of the area has had no water since the April floods. Picture: Supplied.

OThongathi residents blocked roads in protest over the lack of water supply in the area. Most of the area has had no water since the April floods. Picture: Supplied.

Share