Caption: Bulelwa Speelman from the Department of Water and Sanitation, Karin Stoffels and Janine Fernold from Environmental Services: George Municipality getting ready tohelp clean the Schaapkop River in Thembalethu.
George Municipality last week assisted the National Department for Water Affairs and Sanitation with their Clear River Programme. Deputy Minister Pamela Tshwete at a briefing with the Municipal ManagerTrevor Botha, announced that the cleaning of the Schaapkop River was the launch of the Clear Rivers Campaign in George and which campaign is closely associated with volunteer activities linked to Mandela Month.
The Breede Gouritz River Catchment Management Agency (BGCMA) as well as volunteers from the Thembalethu community and George Municipal officials assisted with the cleaning of the Schaapkop River which runs through Thembalethu and supports the emerging Thembalethu farmers with irrigation water. Municipal vehicles were made available to remove the collected refuse.
The Deputy Minister, who physically climbed into the river with gumboots and gloves said she loves what she does. “This is about cleaning the river but it is also to teach people not to pollute water. July is Mandela Month. It is not about one day, but cleaning through the month if possible,” the Deputy Minister said.
She asked the community not to pollute the few water resources that we have, especially during the drought. We need our communities to conserve water and not wait on the government but keep their surroundings clean. “Where there is water, keep that place clean,” she appealed.
Cllr Langa Langa, Chairperson of the Water and Sanitation Forum and Ward Councillor for Ward 13, said the Forum represents the entire George with regards to water conservation and preservation. “We as a Forum are trying to add value and assist the Municipality in preserving this scarce resource, water.
“It also doesn’t end with us, but generations after us will still need to use these resources. There is no substitution for water. Water is life,” Cllr Langa said.
“The majority of people are reliant on the municipality’s resources and cannot afford to buy water. We thank the department of Water Affairs and Sanitation for all its efforts and stakeholders partnering with the Forum. I also thank the Municipality’s eagerness to partner with us and move the vehicle forward,” Langa said.
Cllr Ntombi James, Ward Councillor for Ward 21, who assisted with the cleaning, said she was happy that the event was a success.
Last published 19 July 2017