Water crisis takes political turn

Tempers flared as govt and opposition parties conducted site visits to affected areas.

A water tanker arrives in Tsakane on Johannesburg's East Rand on 1 October, 2014. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The water crisis in Gauteng is now at the centre of a political battle.

Tempers flared as government and opposition parties conducted site visits to areas affected by the recent disruptions in water supply.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Jacob Mamabolo yesterday conducted an inspection of reservoirs in high risk areas for water cuts while the Democratic Alliance (DA) tried to provide relief to those affected.

In the Tsakane township on the East Rand, a scuffle broke out between DA Parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane and African National Congress (ANC) ward councillor Silas Letsimo.

It seems Maimane's visit was not well received by residents either.

They booed him, burnt a DA t-shirt and asked where he has been over the past three weeks while their taps were dry.

But Maimane has blamed the ANC for their behaviour, calling it an act of political intolerance.

The DA was forced to leave the area with the water tankers they'd brought with them for the community.

There's been speculation the crisis could cost the ANC votes in the 2016 local government elections.