Residents in part of Mamelodi east without water supply for 13 months

Residents in Ikageng in Mamelodi east said they had been deprived of water for more than 13 months. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

Residents in Ikageng in Mamelodi east said they had been deprived of water for more than 13 months. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jan 26, 2023


Pretoria - While access to clean running water is an important basic need for people to survive, residents in Ikageng in Mamelodi east yesterday said they had been deprived of that basic service for more than 13 months.

They said they had reported the issue to the City of Tshwane repeatedly, but in vain, and they have had to rely on water supplied by two metro trucks.

Yesterday residents were carrying water buckets, large bottles and drums to collect water yet again.

They complained about water running out before all could fill their buckets then they were forced to wait for another truck to come, which could take hours.

Their living situation was one of being dry – and darkness, as they also struggle with long hours of load shedding.

They said their councillor did nothing for them. His response was that the issue was political, therefore he could do nothing for them.

Queries to the City were met with the response that they were unaware of the problem. Community members said they could not keep on barricading roads to be heard, as this brought them no answers.

Resident Vincent Gama said their livelihoods had been affected badly, and the water issue also affected businesses.

“We have been striking for so long, and our issues are not taken into consideration. This issue started when the people in Waterkloof on the mountains connected their pipes with ours, destroying our water supply.

“It has been more than 13 months without water, but before water stopped running completely we did have water coming from our taps at about midnight, so we would fill our containers up at night.”

He said he was on medication and slept with a 2-litre bottle of water beside his bed, while the children were also affected as there was no water at schools either.

“Water is a basic need. How are we expected to survive?” he said.

Stephen Maabane said he could not do laundry as he was saving the water he had. “We have tried to reach out to the councillor, but the time he came to address us he didn’t come with solutions. The people in power are failing us.”

Maabane said it was harder for the working class because the water trucks came after 8am and before 4pm.

“We would like the government to hear our complaints and respond,” he said.

Resident Peter Mojela said water was a source of life, without which they could not survive.

“By law every household must have proper clean running water. Now we struggle carrying heavy containers while we pay tax. The government should look closely into this matter and evaluate it so that it comes up with solutions,” he said.

City spokesperson Goitsemang Molaeng said: “The City of Tshwane is experiencing a delay in establishing the area because it is proclaimed, and if Ikageng is a formalised area, we will need a reference number for the water interruption that should have been given to residents after reporting the outage.”

Pretoria News