It is quite astonishing that government is only now starting to act in delivering water.
Water is a basic human right as enshrined in our Constitution and the provision thereof is a legal requirement of government not an option.
The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the consistent failures of government in focusing its attention on the provision of bulk water infrastructure and maintenance.
Communities across the country who have been water starved for decades are receiving much needed relief to quench their thirst for water. Albeit that temporary relief measures will satisfy the current need in terms of the crisis we face as a nation right now, we must focus on the long term to keep taps from running dry.
Thousands of residents who live in predominantly rural areas have been hardest hit by the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. Furthermore, government must immediately desist from continually politicizing water delivery and all other relief efforts. Covid-19 is affecting all South Africans and as the IFP we understand this that is why we all our public representatives are going out to assist where possible, without parading our party regalia for attention.
The IFP’s donation of half-a-million rand to the Solidarity Fund was done to stand in solidarity with South Africans during this time, and we hope our contribution to the Solidarity Fund will make a meaningful difference.
Our demonstrations of solidarity need not be monetary but through our small and personal efforts we can all help each other as South Africans. All public representatives of the IFP will out to assist communities with relief efforts and to ensure that we hold government accountable during this time of crisis.
The roll out jojo-tanks and millions of rands in funding to fix water delivery across the country must not only occur during times of virus outbreaks and global pandemics. Now more than ever we have learned a valuable lesson in ensuring that we are ready and that we are able to manage worsening health conditions but that our government can be spurred into action when crisis hits. South Africa must remain in crisis mode if we are to get things done and to deliver to the poorest of the poor.
Xolani Ngwezi MP is the IFP Spokesperson on Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation