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Parys and surrounding areas without water for weeks

AfriForum, a leading civil rights organisation dedicated to upholding constitutional rights, has issued a strong demand for the Ngwathe Local Municipality and the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) to immediately restore the water supply to the communities of Parys, Tumahole and Schonkenville. Some areas within these communities have been without water for two weeks, violating their constitutional right to access clean and potable water.

The situation has reached a critical point, with residents facing dire health risks and significant hardships due to the lack of access to water. AfriForum’s letter highlights the legal obligations of the municipality and the DWS, as well as the potential legal consequences and administrative actions that could arise from their failure to address this crisis promptly.

“The right to access sufficient water is not only a fundamental human right but also a legal obligation enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa,” said Marais de Vaal, Advisor for Environmental Affairs at AfriForum. “The affected communities have endured unacceptable hardships, and we will not stand idly by while their constitutional rights are disregarded. We demand immediate action to restore their access to clean and safe drinking water.”

AfriForum’s letter underlines the importance of transparent communication with affected residents, a clear timeline for resolution, and interim measures to provide water during this crisis. If the situation persists, AfriForum warns of potential legal actions.

“We strongly urge the Ngwathe Local Municipality and the DWS to take this matter seriously and take immediate, decisive action,” De Vaal concluded. “The consequences of their inaction extend beyond legal ramifications. They have a moral and ethical duty to ensure the well-being of their citizens. The minister is well aware of this situation and has made a lot of promises to the communities in a previous meeting held and chaired by him.”

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