The water shortages that have been experienced in Gauteng are set to continue, at least for the next two weeks, according to Rand Water. Addressing members of the media fraternity, the speaker representing Rand Water, Mr Justice Mohale, said that the two weeks grace period would only be true if there was no interruption due to power outages. Mohale announced that Rand Water reservoirs were at the time, forty percent full, meaning that it would take at least two weeks to fill them up if there was no interruptions caused by loss of power.
Water shortages, previously unknown in South Africa’s economic hub of Gauteng, have recently reared their ugly head with some parts of the province having gone without water for over a week. The explanation that has been put forwarded for the water crisis was that power cables that transmit electricity to the engines that pump water were stolen by the copper wire thieves. This, Mohale adds, has resulted in the reservoirs being quickly emptied.
Rand Water adds that a lot of time is required for the reservoirs to fill up to the required capacity. The spokesman said that the reason why the water had been off was that the water authority was in the process of filling these reservoirs. He added that the fact that the reservoirs are not full means that they cannot effectively pump water to high areas, which would explain the absence of water in these areas. A decision was taken earlier in the week to rotate the delivery of water to areas that originally did not have water. They were planning to close off water to the low lying areas so that enough pressure could be built to distribute water to the higher areas. Mohale also revealed that some water bowsers would also be used to distribute water to other areas that were not accessing water.
People on the ground were, however, not optimistic and as accepting of the explanations and promises given by the water distributing company. There were a few who argued that the reason being advanced by the company was only the tip of the iceberg, alluding to the fact that there was a more practical reason that was more sinister than they were being led to believe. They argued that the absence of water was having a disruptive effect on the families. Some families revealed that they were having to relocate to areas with water while others have had to make drastic changes to their routines in order to make do without water.