In the wake of a devastating drought, the Department of Water and Sanitation in KwaZulu-Natal, is set to aid the province through the launch of a new Emergency Drought Mitigation Plan.
According to the department, they have actively been trying to assist and support the 256 towns and surrounding communities affected by the drought, setting up various programmes to help with the dire consequences associated with it.
“The new borehole programme has identified 1 118 new boreholes, 3 000 water tanks have been made available to provide water to affected communities and there is ongoing assessment for the refurbishment of boreholes,” the department said.
Additionally, it has been confirmed that approximately R97 million has been set aside in drought relief, with Uthukela, Umzinyathi, Amajuba, Zululand, Uthungulu and Umgungundlovu identified as the areas hit hardest by the drought.
In the short-term, the department will combat the drought by introducing drought operating rules, a groundwater resource development programme, water tankering services from available sources, rainwater harvesting, and the protection and use of springs.
Meanwhile, Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister, Lindiwe Sisulu, has called on locals to enhance and implement water conservation measures following claims that provincial dam storage capacity remains below average at 54.9%. – Bjorn Vorster