Call to address Limpopo water challenges

Officials involved in the Olifantspoort and Ebenezer upgrade project have been urged to move with speed in resolving water challenges.

Minister of Water and Sanitation, Senzo Mchunu, his deputy, David Mahlobo, as well as Polokwane Local Municipality Mayor Mosema Mpe echoed this sentiment during a meeting with Lepelle Northern Water in Pretoria.

The aim of Thursday’s meeting was to receive progress report on the Olifantspoort and Ebenezer upgrade project that is meant to address water challenges in the Capricorn and Sekhukhune Districts, Polokwane Local Municipalities and surrounding areas in Limpopo.

The project entails the refurbishment and upgrading of aging water infrastructure to meet the current water demands of the increasing population.

Phase 1A of the Olifantspoort and Ebenezer upgrades includes the refurbishment of the water scheme to function at full capacity of 114 m/l per day by October 2024. This is to be increased to 144 m/l per day by 2026, depending on the funding.

Meanwhile, phase 1b is aimed at increasing the capacity to 180 m/l per day by 2027. Phase 2 of the project is earmarked to increase production to 270 m/l per day by 2029.

“Giving marching orders to the officials from the department, Lepelle and Polokwane Local Municipality, Minister Mchunu said they need to revise the plans to implement the project and come up with workable solutions that will address the current challenges,” said the Department of Water and Sanitation.

Deputy Director-General responsible for Water and Sanitation Services, Risimati Mathye presented a12-point plan that is set to unlock challenges facing all stakeholders directly involved in the project.

These include amongst others, concrete partnership with Development Bank of Southern Africa, improved contract management, improved capacity, improved decision making and good governance.

Minister Mchunu implored all those involved in the project to take their work seriously with dedicated project managers to oversee the work done on the ground.

He asked for regular updates with clear timelines on when certain aspects of the project will be completed.

Source: South African Government News Agency