'Entire Mothutlung will have water by midnight'

A local Mothutlung ward councillor says residents are overreacting and insisted restored water is drinkable.

Police are investigating the death of two Mothotlung residents after a clash with police during a service delivery protest on Monday.

JOHANNESBURG - A local ward councillor in Mothutlung says residents are overreacting and insists the tap water restored to the majority of the area is drinkable.

This week two people were shot and killed in the North West township near Brits, allegedly by police, during a violent protest over water supply problems when three local water pumps broke down.

The township has been without water for the past three months.

A third Mothutlung resident died in hospital on Wednesday after falling from a moving police nyala on Tuesday.

While police officers have denied pushing him out of the vehicle, Theodore Seema's family disagrees.

Local ward councillor Solly Davids says 90 percent of the water has been restored to the township.

But residents living in extension 1 and 2 say their taps are still dry.

Davids has called on community members to be patient as it will take a few hours to fill up the water pipes connected to their homes.

"I don't want to say they're lying. There are some sections that are at the upper level so there may be pressure issues. But as the pressure builds up the water will arrive at their homes."

Meanwhile residents told Eyewitness News they have running water, but it's still not drinkable.

At the same time, Madibeng Municipal Manager Monde Juta says they have restored water to at least 95 percent of the region and are on track to seeing all taps are running by midnight.

"It is possible that one section doesn't have a supply at this stage, but as per our commitment, by midnight, the entire Mothutlung will have water."

He says an investigation is underway into why all three pumps at the local water plant broke down simultaneously.

"As the municipality we're doing our own investigation into the problem. This is a very unique instance."

The probe should reveal whether the plant may have been sabotaged, allegedly to benefit the owners of companies supplying water tanks.

But residents say even if water is restored, the situation will remain a ticking time bomb until dealt with properly.