A Department of Public Works contract will ensure that government facilities provide essential services to rural communities in a clean and comfortable environment. 05-09-2011 –...

A Department of Public Works contract will ensure that government facilities provide essential services to rural communities in a clean and comfortable environment.

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The well will never run dry again for government facilities in far flung areas in the Eastern Cape after Amatola Water began the first phase of refurbishing stand-alone water schemes in the sparsely populated districts of Joe Gqabi, Alfred Nzo, OR Tambo, Amathole and Chris Hani districts.

The Department of Public Works, which is responsible for managing government facilities including those that provide essential services to rural areas, recently contracted Amatola Water to refurbish standalone schemes in order to make these functional and connected to municipal systems where possible. Where connection to municipal schemes is not feasible, the utility is responsible for maintaining the stand-alone schemes.

Amatola Water operations head Xola Bomela says the R20 million first phase will be completed by the end of August this year. Phase two which includes the operation and maintenance of the schemes will follow.

Facilities which will benefit from the contract include the departments of defense, justice, police, home affairs, correctional

services, education, health and social development which are not connected to municipal systems such as water and sanitation. “These rural areas also have multipurpose centres which include tenants such as home affairs, police and the courts. This project will ensure that these essential services are provided comfortably with a water and sanitation system in place,” explains Bomela.

The utility is already operating and maintaining 67 stand-alone schemes in the western part of the province, assisting the Cacadu, Amathole and Chris Hani municipalities. The contract is worth R8 million a year and will span over five years.

News editor