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‘Water-saving efforts must continue in the Western Cape’

The Department of Water and Sanitation's Malusi Rayi says residents should keep up their water-saving efforts.

The National Water and Sanitation Department released water from the Berg River Dam to the Misverstand Dam to alleviate the water crisis along the West Coast. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Department of Water and Sanitation says the Western Cape’s dam levels are nowhere near what's needed to break the drought, despite days of rainfall in parts of the province.

The province is currently in the grips of its worst drought in more than a decade. However, at least one dam has reached capacity partly thanks to a government initiative to redistribute water to the Misverstand Dam.

The Department’s Malusi Rayi says residents should keep up their water-saving efforts.

“We expect a lot of rain, but we call on citizens to keep on saving water. The resource is under a lot of strain. There will be rain with some possible localised flooding. We’ll know when we’re near to breaking the drought. We need a lot of rain.”

On Monday, the City of Cape Town said it was encouraged by the downward trend in water usage and urged Capetonians to continue using as little water as possible.

The city’s Deputy Mayor, Ian Neilson, said: “It is important that we carry on saving, irrespective of the weather, and continue to live the 50-litre life until the dams fill up sufficiently. The National Department of Water and Sanitation requires that we reduce our water usage to 450 million litres per day. There is a real threat that if we cannot lower usage further, then even tougher restrictions could be imposed by the national department.”

Water restrictions remain in place for municipalities across the Western Cape.

Current water restrictions for municipalities, according to the Western Cape government:

Beaufort West Municipality - level 4B
Bergrivier Municipality - level 2
Bitou Municipality - level 1
Breede Valley Municipality - level 3B
Cederberg Municipality - level 2
Cape Agulhas Municipality - level 1
City of Cape Town - level 6B
Drakenstein Municipality - level 6
George Municipality - level 2B
Hessequa Municipality - level 1
Kannaland Municipality - level 3
Knysna Municipality - level 3
Laingsburg Municipality - level 1
Langeberg Municipality - level 1
Matzikama Municipality - level 2
Mossel Bay Municipality - no restrictions
Overstrand Municipality - level 2
Oudtshoorn Municipality - no restrictions
Prince Albert Municipality - level 1
Saldanha Municipality - level 6B
Stellenbosch Municipality - level 5
Swartland Municipality - level 5
Swellendam Municipality - no restrictions
Theeswaterskloof Municipality - level 3
Witzenberg Municipality - level 4

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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