Pretoria - Minister of Water and Sanitation, Senzo Mchunu, has to find an additional R1 billion to complete the failed Giyani Water Project in Limpopo that has been in limbo for four years.
The project has already spent R3.2bn that is not accounted for, and needs a further R498 million to ensure installation of the water pipelines, and another R600m to upgrade the Nandoni Water Treatment Works (WTW).
Mchunu, flanked by his deputies David Mahlobo and Dikeledi Magadzi, acknowledged the need for more funding and vowed to find it.
In a statement released yesterday, department spokesperson Sputnik Ratau said Mchunu was waiting for documents that would support the release of such funding. He said that Mchunu emphasised the need to work urgently and with speed, while ensuring that all financial and legal prescripts were not undermined.
“We cannot afford to delay the provision of water to the people of Vhembe and Giyani. We are committed to providing services to our people, and today I am making an undertaking that the time starts now … You will get water in your villages,” Mchunu said.
According to Lepelle Northern Water Board chairperson, Dr Ndweleni Mphephu, the money increase would allow the plant to provide water required to the Vhembe, Mopani and Capricorn district municipalities.
Mchunu interacted with the communities and stakeholders of Vhembe, Thohoyandou, and Giyani.
He promised that work was under way to resolve outstanding issues and errors that have delayed the provision of water to the people of the Vhembe and Mopani district municipalities.
He said: “We are here to address any outstanding issues and they should be resolved within a reasonable time frame. Construction of a 49km pipeline from Nandoni to Nsami has resumed and Lepelle Northern Water, Limpopo’s water utility, is the implementing agent… 37% of construction has been completed …”