by Siviwe Zibi
The department of Water and Sanitation has called on Gauteng residents to use water sparingly. This comes after the department planned to shutdown the Lesotho Highlands Water Project for inspection and maintenance. The shutdown will take place from 01 October 2019 until 30 November 2019.
No water transfers to the Vaal River System will be possible over this period as the tunnel will be drained for these inspections and maintenance work to be done. The Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) augments the water resources in the Vaal River System that provides water to Rand Water, Sasol, Eskom and a large number of smaller users.
“This is something that has to happen after so many years, between 7-10 years, it has to be looked into so that we know and do not get caught out if anything goes wrong,” said department spokesperson Sputnik Ratau.
“During the inspection and maintenance work, water consumers and especially the farming community will be affected. This, therefore, necessitates that water users heed the call to use water with the utmost sensitivity to the limited water supply,” he added.
Water users in Gauteng are therefore requested to work cooperatively with the department by ensuring that they use water sparingly and with the greatest care. This is important so as to guarantee that as the work continues, water users are not left in need and that they are able to carry on with their lives as close to normal as possible.
The department would also like to assure Gauteng residents that contingency measures have been put in place to ensure that water supply continues uninterrupted during this period.