Gauteng residents warned of more stringent water regulations

From Monday the City of Ekurhuleni will be cutting water supply between 9pm and 5am daily.

South Africa is facing a national water crisis.  Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane says Gauteng residents can expect more stringent regulations in the near future.

Mokonyane has been giving feedback following her meeting with all nine water boards in South Africa.

She says while various mechanisms are in place to ensure sufficient supply, people need to save water now more than ever.

From Monday, the City of Ekurhuleni will implement stricter water saving measures by cutting supply between 9pm and 5am daily.

Minister Mokonyane says her department will reduce water supply to municipalities by 15% and it’s up to individual municipalities to determine how they’ll get consumers to comply.

“The national department and Rand Water have no authority to enforce bylaws. It is the responsibility of the municipality to have bylaws and enforce those bylaws, including the penalties that they introduce.”

At the same time chairperson of Rand Water Tshidi Hashatse says the restrictions are necessary because many are still abusing the resource and opting to pay a fine.

The Water and Sanitation Minister says the supply in Gauteng has reached a crisis level requiring stricter water bylaws.

She says the Vaal Dam is currently at 26% of usable water, but should it reach 25%, it may affect the dam infrastructure.

Mokonyane, however, adds that there are numerous mega projects to address the problem.

“The uneven ability by our municipalities in some of the provinces to deal with the provision of water to the end user, where you may find that there is a community that has been without water for the past two weeks and yet there could have been interventions by the municipality.”