South Africa News

Westville without water for 3 days and counting

Residents in the Westville area in Durban have been without water since Thursday with some blaming the ongoing eThekwini Municipality strike.

A local resident claimed that infrastructure was being vandalized.

This week eThekwini Municipality secured a court interdict regarding the unlawful worker strike.

“The interdict against striking employees as well as those that are members of the South African Municipal Workers’ Union, prohibits any unlawful conduct, acts of violence, and interference with the City’s activities, services, and operations,” said City spokesperson Gugu Sisilana.

“It further restrains the striking employees from intimidating, harassing, assaulting, threatening or perpetuating acts of violence against employees, service providers or those accessing offices or workstations,“ she added.

The order also requires workers to follow their employment contracts and the Act, since engaging in unlawful behaviour is considered misconduct and may result in disciplinary action.

*Aphiwe who lives in the suburb said it has been a major inconvenience.

“Water is vital for everyday life. How are we supposed to cook, bath and clean? This has not only been frustrating but expensive as well as I had to buy bottled water to take care of my family’s needs,” she said.

The mother of three added that her children had to skip school on Friday because there was not enough water to bath.

“I am grateful to the friends and family who have stepped in and sent us buckets of water.”

On Friday the City said they were concerned about the impact that the unlawful strike action had on service delivery and has put in place emergency contingency plans to minimize service disruptions to residents and business.

This includes deployment of security personnel at strategic locations to monitor and safeguard critical infrastructure.

Sisilana said the Municipality is aware of the interruption of water supply to various areas across the City.

“The strike has resulted in our technical teams not being able finalize troubleshooting on the northern aqueduct to determine if there’s improved efficiency of water flow on the pipeline after the completion of the installation of valves on February 28.

“Incidents of vandalism and sabotage of water infrastructure has also resulted in water outages in some areas.Teams have been deployed to attend to damages and restore water supply. Water tankers are also being dispatched to affected areas.”

*Not her real name. Changed for privacy.

-IOL

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