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Gigaba gives City of CT go-ahead for budget changes amid water shortage

Malusi Gigaba said he's been advised that regulatory challenges might hinder efforts to effectively implement drought mitigation efforts.

Picture: EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba has given the go-ahead for the City of Cape Town to make budgetary changes to address current water shortages.

Gigaba has told city officials he's been advised that regulatory challenges might hinder efforts to effectively implement drought mitigation efforts.

Mayor De Lille says the City of Cape Town's plans to deal with the water crisis has been boosted thanks to assistance from Gigaba.

"The go-ahead from the minister allows me as executive mayor to immediately incur and approve unforeseen and unavoidable expenditure in terms of the Municipal Finance Management Act."

On Sunday, Mayor Patricia de Lille visited a site at the V&A Waterfront where a temporary desalination plant will be erected.

Eight other desalination sites have been identified within the metro where dam levels are just over 28%.

De Lille has welcomed Gigaba's announcement.

“I want to thank Minister Gigaba for responding to our request as this will assist us in speeding up the procurement process. The go-ahead from the minister now allows me to immediately incure and approve unforeseen and unavoidable expenditure in terms of the MMFA.”

LISTEN: De Lille shares details on CT's desalination plant

THEEWATERSKLOOF DAM

Theewaterskloof Dam remains just 27% full, well below the average of just over 36% for dams in the Western Cape.

Eyewitness News has visited the dam which is Cape Town's biggest water supplier.

The question now is will taps run dry in Cape Town?

It's the question on the minds of all Capetonians and a scenario government officials are desperately trying to avert, ultimately it's the dams that tell the story.

Theewaterskloof Dam, Cape Town's biggest water supplier, has been reduced to a barren landscape.

Tree stumps litter the dam floor, scorched white by the sun, another harrowing reminder of the crisis.

While everyone is looking to solve the crisis, from commissioning desalination plants to constructing greywater systems, the so-called day zero, predicted to sometime in March, looms large.

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