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Tshwane mayor warns public

Kgosientso Ramokgopa warned of the possibility of an outbreak of waterborne diseases.

Major roads around Gauteng have been damaged by severe rains since beginning of March. Picture: iWitness.

PRETORIA - Tshwane's Health and Social Development Department has warned of the possibility of an outbreak of waterborne diseases after two weeks of heavy rains.

Gauteng has been lashed by persistent downpours this month, which have wreaked havoc on infrastructure, houses and roads.

Tshwane Mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa says officials are visiting schools in the city to educate pupils on how to prevent diseases such as cholera, hepatitis and tuberculosis.

Earlier on Monday, the Department of Co-operative Governance confirmed 32 people died nationwide as a result of flooding in five provinces.

More rain is forecast for this week.

Officials are now preparing to deal with a possible increase in waterborne diseases.

Ramokgopa says it's still early days, but government must be proactive.

The municipality will be stretched to the limit as it tries to collect R800 million to repair houses in the city's townships, and over R124 million more to repair roads and infrastructure.

The mayor says they are working with departments from other councils as well as national government to help them raise the necessary funds.

Ramokgopa said in addition to the storms that lashed the country last year, the recent wet weather damaged almost 45,000 houses, with a total of 179, 000 people affected.

Meanwhile, the City of Tshwane will provide financial support to the families of three boys from Mamelodi East whose bodies were discovered at the weekend.

Neo Setlhabane, Gomolemo Mangena and Bonolo Malemela, aged between nine and 10,

were swept away by flood water while playing in a stormwater tunnel.

Ramokgopa says government will ensure the children are given dignified funerals.