AfriForum tested the water of various towns in the Free state province from August to October 2020 to determine the quality of this town’s drinking water (blue drop status) and sewage water (green drop status).

This project was even more important this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and research that shows that this virus could be traced in sewage systems, meaning that one can identify focus points.

“We could determine that the all the drinking water that was tested in various towns in the Free State complies with the minimum standards and does not contain harmful bacteria with the exception of Boshoff where the water tested positive for faecal coliform. AfriForum also did a SANAS accredited water test on borehole water and the results showed that it is safe for human consumption.  AfriForum will continuously test the water quality because residents have a constitutional right to clean drinking water,” says Alta Pretorius, AfriForum’s District Coordinator for the Mooirivier region.

Blue drop results

These results indicate that the drinking water of all the towns in the Free State province that were tested, is clean.

AllanridgeMatjhabeng LMCleanCleanClean
BethlehemDihlabeng LMCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein CentralMangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Fichardt Park)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Hospital Park)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Pellissier)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Rayton- Heuwelsig)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Uitsig)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Langenhoven Park)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein (Wilgehof)Mangaung MetroCleanCleanClean
BothavilleNala LMPhosphates >25 ppmCleanClean
BoshoffTokologo LMCleanFaecal coliform bacteria (in borehole water)
BultfonteinTswelopele LMCleanCleanClean
DealesvilleTokologo LMCleanClean
FrankfortMafube LMCleanCleanClean
HarrismithMaluti-A-Phofung LMCleanCleanClean
HeilbronNgwathe LMCleanCleanClean
HennenmanMatjhabeng LMCleanCleanClean
HertzogvilleTokologo LME. coli >1 000 cfu[1]CleanClean
KoppiesNgwathe LMCleanCleanClean
KroonstadMoqhaka LMCleanCleanClean
OdendaalsrusMatjhabeng LMCleanClean
ParysNgwathe LMCleanCleanClean
Petrus SteynNketoana LMCleanClean
ReitzNketoana LMCleanClean
SasolburgMetsimaholo LMCleanCleanClean
SenekalSetsoto LMCleanCleanClean
TheunissenMasilonyana LMCleanCleanClean
ViljoenskroonMoqhaka LMCleanCleanClean
WelkomMatjhabeng LMCleanCleanClean
WinburgMasilonyana LMCleanCleanClean
Bloemfontein campusUniversity of the Free StateCleanCleanClean

Green drop results

According to AfriForum’s green drop results only one sewage treatment plant out of the 14  that were tested does comply with the prescribed microbiological standards.

BethlehemDihlabeng LMFaecal coliform bacteria >1 000>10 000Closed due to upgrading
BothavilleNala LME. coli >1 500>1 000>1 000
BloemfonteinMangaung Metro>1 000>10 000
Bultfontein >10 000>10 000
FrankfortMafube LMClean> 5 000>10 000
HarrismithMaluti-A-Phofung LM> 2 000Out of order
HeilbronNgwathe LMCleanClean>1 000
HertzogvilleTokologo LME. coli >1 000 cfu>10 000>1000
KroonstadMoqhaka LMFaecal coliform bacteria >1 000>2 000>1 000
ParysNgwathe LME. coli >20 000; 20 000 faecal coliform bacteriaClean>10 000
ReitzNketoana LM>2 000>10 000
SasolburgMetsimaholo LMCleanCleanClean
WelkomMatjhabeng LME. coli >1 000> 10 000>10 000
WinburgMasilonyana LMFaecal coliform bacteria >1 000> 4 000>1000

The civil rights organisation voiced its concern over sewage treatment plants in the municipalities that do not comply with the prescribed standards. “We will further investigate the non-compliance and act where necessary,” says Jaco Grobbelaar, AfriForum’s District Head of the central region.

“AfriForum’s national blue and green drop project focuses on the state of drinking water and sewage treatment plants in towns. This project does not necessarily focus on the condition of the plant itself, but rather on the quality of the water that is supplied after this process as the end product in the form of drinking water and treated sewage water,” concludes Grobbelaar.

As the custodian of water the Department of Water and Sanitation does not fulfil its obligation to enforce legislation when municipal authorities are the guilty parties. AfriForum requests residents of the  Free state province to give this organisation a mandate to continuously monitor the water quality. SMS “Clean water” to 45350 (R1) and support this action.

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