Government has invested millions to lighten the plight of residents of Kroonstad who are feeling the effects of drought. The town, along with Viljoenskroon and Steynsrus, is part of the Moqhaka municipality, Free State. The area is one of the towns worst hit by drought in Free State.
The department intervened by providing 24 water tankering trucks with the capacity of 18 000 litres each to supply.
Further, to help make water available and improve the quality of water available to people of the municipality the department also invested R50 million to upgrade the Kroonstad Waste Water Treatment Works.
Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane launched the plant recently.
Speaking during the launch at Seeisoville Stadium, the Minister explained that the country’s water challenges were due to climate change.
Minister Mokonyane also pointed out that South Africa is the 30th driest country in the world.
“We need to save and conserve water; we need to invest in exploring the use of ground water because historically South Africa never valued the maximum use of underground water. We have been very dependent on surface water. With the challenges of climate change, we are now beginning to adapt. We are reusing, we are conserving,” said the Minister, referring to the water-waste plant.
The department also provided four 80 000-litre tankers around the municipality to help deliver water in the area.
Kamohelo Modipa (14) could not hide his excitement. “I am very happy; we used to struggle a lot before. We would go to very far places to get water,” he said.
Elder Modiehi Matlokosi (84) from Seisoville in Kroonstad was one of the people who received a wheelbarrow with a tank. “I am very happy, I have no other words,” she said.
According to the Minister, there’s a plan to remove asbestos and clay pipes, and invest in infrastructure development.
The Minister said this would help government create and meet the needs of the growing municipality.
“Water is life and unlike other things there’s no substitute for it. Let’s use our water wisely,” concluded the Minister.