Freedom Front Plus
Freedom Front Plus

FF Plus queries sharp increase in eThekwini’s water tariffs

Given the availability of water in eThekwini (Durban and surrounding areas), residents are justified in feeling unhappy about the 8,5% spike in water tariffs in the Metro's 2021/22 budget.

The increase is much higher than those in some of the water-scarce metros even though the city's main source of water, the Midmar Dam, is overflowing.

Apart from the problems in the Umgeni Water Board, the FF Plus thinks that the reason for the unacceptably high water tariff increase, which is double the current inflation rate, is the city's growing inability to properly manage its infrastructure.

Despite the promises and undertakings to put measures in place to upgrade infrastructure and limit water losses that are made year in and year out, nothing is done. Water losses caused by outdated pipes and theft already comprise more than 40% of the Metro's total water consumption.

This percentage is 15% higher than the internationally accepted rate of 25% for water losses in metros. It is clear that residents are now expected to pay for the ANC's incompetence in governing the city.

Given the country's poor economy and the lasting impact of the Covid-19 restrictions, this increase is making eThekwini's ideal to become Africa's most affordable and liveable city seem absurd.

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