Carolina water “clean and drinkable”

Water supplied to Carolina is “clean and drinkable”, Gert Sibande District Municipality acting manager Vusi Ngcobo said on Monday.

He said samples taken on Friday from five points in the water supply system were found to be clean.

The only interruption of the water supply happened on Saturday when a pipe burst, and it was fixed the same day.

Democratic Alliance MP Marti Wenger accused the municipality of failing to comply with a ruling by the High Court in Pretoria that it supply Caroline residents with potable water by Friday.

The municipality is appealing the ruling. It contends that it is not responsible for supplying potable water.

“We do not have the necessary by-laws to recover the cost of supplying potable water. That is the function of the Chief Albert Luthuli Municipality, which is a local municipality,” Ngcobo said.

His municipality was required only to provide bulk infrastructure for the supply of water in the area.

“If they do require assistance we provide it,” he said.

In January, Boesmanspruit Dam was contaminated by acid mine water seepage, which affected the tap water in Carolina, north of Ermelo, and the surrounding areas.

The municipality set up a task team, which included officials from the department of water affairs and community development workers.

The team recommended the upgrading of the water treatment works and the urgent construction of a mini-lab to test water quality.

“Even when the water supply becomes safe to drink at its source, this doesn’t address the problem that sedimentation in the pipes continues to contaminate the water,” said Wenger.

Ngcobo said engineers were working around the clock, monitoring the system and performing various tests.

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