WaterCAN laid charges against Joburg municipal managers, specifically the current manager, Floyd Brink and Bryne Maduka, the former manager. WaterCAN is an initiative of the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa). According to TimesLIVE, the charges come in response to the failure to address the sewage overflow issue from the Goudkoppies wastewater treatment works.
The problem began when the generator at Goudkoppies malfunctioned on April 27 last year, forcing sewage inflow to go to the nearby Bushkoppies works during power cuts. However, a subsequent cable theft incident at Goudkoppies further exacerbated the situation, leaving Bushkoppies ill-equipped to handle the increased flow.
Despite a directive from the Department of Water & Sanitation (DWS) ordering the CoJ to cease pollution and implement corrective measures, the issue remains unresolved even after a year. The Goudkoppies inflow continues to be rerouted to Bushkoppies, spilling raw sewage into the Harringtonspruit, Klip River, and the Vaal River.
WaterCAN, in its pursuit of justice, obtained copies of the DWS directive and reports on-site visits, revealing no improvement in inspections conducted in February and March of 2023. In a recent laboratory test in Eikenhof, high levels of E. coli were detected in the Klip River, indicating severe contamination from the wastewater treatment plants.
Asavela Kakaza, Outa’s legal project manager, asserted that failing to comply with the directive constitutes a criminal offence per Sections 19 and 20 of the National Water Act. WaterCAN is adamant that the CoJ and the municipal manager should be held accountable through the criminal justice system for their non-compliance.
Dr Ferrial Adam, executive manager at WaterCAN, emphasises the urgency of addressing sewage pollution as it threatens South Africa’s already scarce water resources. The organisation calls for responsible parties to be held accountable for neglecting their duty to prevent and remedy pollution, violating basic rights, including the right to health.
Picture: Twitter / SophieKgaladi8
Follow us on Google News.