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EC residents desperate plea to govt: ‘People are fighting over water, help us’

People in Eastern Cape areas - like Graaff Reinet, Amathole and Makhanda - who are worst affected by the drought have blamed the government for their situation.

FILE:. Picture: Kaylynn Palm/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Government has moved to placate angry Eastern Cape residents who claim it's not doing enough to mitigate the effects of a grinding drought.

People in Eastern Cape areas - like Graaff Reinet, Amathole and Makhanda - who are worst affected by the drought have blamed the government for their situation.

Between a lack of planning, mismanagement and a feeling that government structures just aren't taking the problem seriously enough, residents told EWN they have had enough.

“The way the municipality is behaving is like there’s no hope for us.”

Another resident added: “Please do something. We are crying from our hearts. People are fighting over water.”

A Makhanda resident said people living in informal settlements were struggling and blocked the N2 during a protest over water.

Government can't be blamed for a natural phenomenon like drought. They refute the claims that this event caught them with their pants down, saying they have various plans in place to get the water flowing again.

That’s cold comfort for residents of these towns, some of whom have been living without running water for months.