R6m water scheme
By Nangamso Mabindla
24 March 2005
THERE was a celebratory start to the Easter weekend in the Buffalo City village of Peelton when the national Department of Water Affairs and Forestry handed over a R6-million water scheme - during National Water Week - on Wednesday March 23.
The long-awaited basic water supply scheme, which acts as a borehole and 300-kilolitre reservoir, will service villages in the Amahlathi Local Municipality (Stutterheim, Cathcart, Kei Road, Keiskammahoek) and Buffalo City Municipality. The villages that will benefit are Kwa-Train, Nompumelelo, Mdange, Sixekweni, Majah, Drayini and Nkqonkqweni.
Villagers came in their numbers to celebrate the water scheme, which will supply 25 litres of water, per capacity per day, to about 6 000 people.
Buffalo City Mayor Sindisile Maclean said he was happy the villagers would receive water, as it was their constitutional right to do so. "It really warms my heart to know that our rural communities will now receive water. We are happy to be part of this historic occasion; you deserve to have access to clean and healthy water."
The mayor urged the beneficiaries to use their new resource wisely and conserve water. "Please do not misuse this precious resource. Remember, some villages are still waiting for us to deliver the same service to them."
He commended the national department for its role in bringing water to the people, saying it showed good relationships between the different spheres of government.
Provincial Premier Nosimo Balindlela said she was excited that people would now have access to water close to their homes, remembering the old days when they had to walk for kilometers to fetch water from the nearest river.
"With the new resource, future generations will not have to walk for hours to get a basic necessity. It will be readily available to them," said the barefoot premier, dressed in her trademark traditional outfit.
She urged the seven villages to use the water wisely. "When I come back here I would like to see community gardens. Try using the potential of this resource to the fullest."