OPINION

DA welcomes water crisis being declared a national disaster – Kevin Mileham

MP says dept must now immediately release drought-relief funds

DA welcomes that the water crisis has been declared a national disaster

13 February 2018

The DA welcomes the announcement today that the water crisis, affecting the Western Cape, Northern Cape and the Eastern Cape, has been declared a national disaster.

The department must now immediately release drought-relief funds to these affected provinces to ensure that these provinces can effectively fight this drought.

This means that the Western Cape which was previously classified as a provincial disaster has now been re-classified a national disaster, following the on-going crippling drought in the province.

The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) reassessed the magnitude and severity of the ongoing drought and declared that the provinces of the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Northern Cape as disaster areas.

The fact that we have a national disaster speaks to the ANC government’s inability to maintain the country’s water infrastructure and provide our people with this precious resource.

For the past 2 years the DA has called for the water crisis to be declared a national disaster. However, due to the ANC’s internal issues, these calls fell on deaf ears.

As a result, local and provincial authorities in these provinces have had to exhaust their budgets to find funds in order to increase the water supply to their citizens.

The DA congratulates the people of Cape Town on working together to reduce the amount of water used which has resulted in Day Zero being pushed back to 4 June 2018.

This is proof that if we work together we can achieve our goals. The announcement from CoGTA, albeit two years overdue, means that we now have access to the funds we need to push Day Zero back further.

Issued by Kevin MilehamDA Shadow Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, 13 February 2018