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SAHRC: Lack of infrastructure to blame for Vaal River contamination

A commission’s site inspection exposed a violation of the right to access clean water a clean environment and human dignity.

FILE: Raw sewage at a settlement in Boipatong in the Vaal area. Picture; Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – The South African Human Rights Commission says that one of the biggest challenges in dealing with the contamination of the Vaal River is the lack of infrastructure maintenance.

The commission on Monday held the second leg of its inquiry into raw sewage at the river.

Eyewitness News was told by pupils at a local school two months ago that they were battling to learn and falling ill daily due to the environmental hazards that come with the contaminated dam.

A commission’s site inspection exposed a violation of the right to access clean water a clean environment and human dignity.

Head of Advocacy and Research in Gauteng Philip Molekoa says: "Yes, we’re concerned as a commission and unfortunately as we’re saying the violation continue to persist.

"But we hope at the end of this inquiry we’ll be able to pinpoint who’s responsible and also put our heads together at the government department."

The inquiry resumes on Tuesday morning.