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CT water crisis: 'The poor won’t be scapegoats for incompetence'

Trade union federation Cosatu has organised the protest and claims city bosses have failed to manage the devastating drought.

Cosatu's Tony Ehrenreich seen among protesters during a demonstration in Cape Town over the city's water crisis on Sunday, 21 January 2018. Picture: Graig-Lee Smith/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - A group of demonstrators gathered outside the City of Cape Town’s council offices on Sunday, demanding a concrete solution to the water crisis.

Trade union federation Cosatu has organised the protest and claims city bosses have failed to manage the devastating drought.

Several angry Capetonians, NGO’s and Cosatu members sang and danced outside the city council’s offices.

One protester said: “We will show everybody by means of picketing and whatever means that we’re not taking this lying down. The poor won’t be scapegoats for incompetence of this city.”

Some say they are dissatisfied with the City’s complete failure and mismanagement of the water crisis.

In a statement, Cosatu says simply hiking water tariffs is not enough to stop water guzzlers as the rich will simply pay more to use more water.

Anxiety is mounting as day zero, the day the taps will be switched off, has been brought forward to 21 April.

Meanwhile, Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille is set to consult with the city's legal department over amendments to its system of delegations.

On Friday, during a special council meeting, a vote was made in favour of allowing the entire mayoral committee to deal with the city's water crisis.

De Lille is arguing she had not been consulted on this matter that directly affects her.

Friday’s meeting resolved to delegate the handling of the water crisis and other issues to the entire mayoral committee and not just to De Lille alone.

She says this decision is reviewable.

“Due process was not followed because any amendments must be referred to the delegation’s task team. The task team must then table a report to the city manager, who must bring it to council or consideration.”

Council's decision is in line with the DA's federal executive proposal that de Lille relinquishes control over the city's drought response while she faces disciplinary proceedings.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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