Metro tackles water challenges

Disruptions to water supply in and around Bloemfontein are set to be a thing of the past with the official opening of a multi-million-ran water reservoir by Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality executive mayor Thabo Manyoni last week.

A total of 48 000 households in the metro will now benefit from an uninterrupted and regular supply of water.

The project, which started in 2011, was initiated in order to ease the water shortage challenges that were a frequent occurrence for the residents of the nearby Phahameng township, among others.

It was also intended to ease the pressure on the water supply system, especially on weekends when everybody was home and using water for a variety of needs.

Built at a cost of R42-million, the project saw scores of locals being employed to work on site and to build the fencing around the reservoir to keep it safe from vandals.

At full capacity the reservoir is built to contain 42-million litres of water ready for use by the locals.

During the official opening, Manyoni said the project will assist communities which had in the past been dogged by acute water shortages.

“It is also going to be used to supply water for new developments that we have already agreed on, such as the Vista Park 2 and 3 developments, as well as the Kenneth Motshabi township development, which is known as Dinaweng,” he said.

Manyoni said the development was in line with his administration’s drive to better the lives of the poor and to make true on the promises of the ruling party during the past elections.

“Water is life, and it is a constitutional right of our people, hence we embarked on this project to make sure our people have their dignity restored through the provision of this important, life-giving lubricant,” said the mayor.

Officials on the construction site said the reservoir was at almost 45 percent full – and that by the end of this week it will be 100 percent full.

Metro municipal manager Sibongile Mazibuko said the final water tightness testing for the reservoir will be conducted before the end of this month.

She said a new bulk line supply pipeline will take water from the reservoir to the areas of Hillside View and Turflaagte.

“The pipeline consists of an 800mm diameter pipeline, approximately 8.3km in length,” Mazibuko said.

She added that the facility will be fenced off to minimise chances of vandalism – and that a telemetric system will ensure that the water is not contaminated in any way.

Phahameng resident Mampho Mokebe said the reservoir will ease her troubles as she goes about her household chores.

“The sad thing about the water here was that it was never sufficient when you wanted to do your laundry and spring cleaning,” she said.

“Now one can be assured to start and finish one’s cleaning and washing with no water shortage hiccups.”

The project, which at its height provided employment to almost 80 people, is also meant to assist the metro in eradicating the VIP and bucket toilet systems.

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