Water crisis a local disaster

The drought in Cape Town was officially declared a disaster by the City of Cape Town earlier this week with approximately 113 days of usable water left.

Mayor Patricia de Lille declared a local disaster, in terms of Section 55 of the Disaster Management Act, on Friday March 4.

According to the mayor, this declaration is valid for a period of three months but can be extended on a month-to-month basis by notice in the Provincial Gazette. A council decision is not required.

Xanthea Limberg, mayoral committee member for informal settlements, water and waste services, said: “The City may now invoke emergency procurement procedures if required to expedite the emergency and accelerated-water-resource schemes. This declaration is not an excuse for our residents not to carry on reducing consumption. There are so many great water ambassadors. Without you, we would have been in more serious trouble. We thank the many residents and businesses who are working with us to save water.

“The City is continuing its monitoring and engagement with the top 20 000 consumers across residential, business, industrial and government properties to ensure that they bring their consumption down.

“Those who have not played an active saving role must do so immediately by ensuring that their homes are water-efficient, that they fix their leaks – both above ground and underground – and that they continue to implement no- to low-cost water-saving techniques.”

Residents can email the City at water.restrictions@capetown.gov.za for queries or to report contraventions (evidence should be provided) or SMS 31373. Visit www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater for more information.