Makhathini Lower Pongola water association to address community needs

The Department of Water and Sanitation says the process to set up a governance structure for the newly established Makhathini Lower Pongola Water User Association (WUA) for collaborative use in the northern KwaZulu-Natal has commenced.The Water User As…

The Department of Water and Sanitation says the process to set up a governance structure for the newly established Makhathini Lower Pongola Water User Association (WUA) for collaborative use in the northern KwaZulu-Natal has commenced.

The Water User Association is a statutory body established by the Minister under the National Water Act. It aims to enable water users within a community to pool their resources, including money, human resources, and expertise to carry out water-related activities more effectively.

Through WUA, members can benefit from addressing their local water needs and priorities.

Water and Sanitation spokesperson, Wisane Mavasa, said the process to set up a governance structure has commenced, and the interim management committee which developed the proposal and the constitution, will facilitate the management committee election to be convened on 16 May 2023 in Jozini, Northern KwaZulu-Natal.

Mavasa said Water and Sanitation Minister, Senzo Mchunu, published a Gazette Notice No 48514 early this month, for the establishment of the Makhathini Lower Pongola WUA in terms of the section 92 (1) of the National Water Act, 1998 (Act No 36 of 1998).

“The area of operation of the Makhathini Lower Pongola WUA traverses the jurisdictions of the Jozini and uMhlabuyalingana Local Municipalities under the uMkhanyakude and Pongola Local Municipality in the Zululand District, respectively. The area of operation also falls within the Pongola to Mtamvuna Water Management Area which is located in KZN.

“The area commences from the W44E quaternary catchment in the basin of Pongolapoort Dam flowing north down the Pongola River catchment to the border of Mozambique, stretching to the eSwatini Boarder in the west and aligning to the 45a and 45b quaternary boundaries on the east. This incorporates the quaternaries W43F, W45A, B, and W57K,” Mavasa explained.

She added that the Makhathini Lower Pongola WUA management committee will consist of 15 members representing the user groups within the catchment, including commercial and emerging farmers; tourism and recreation; nature conservation; Water Services Authorities (uMkhanyakude and Zululand District Municipalities); and uMkhanyakude Local House of Traditional Leaders.

Mavasa highlighted that all members in the water users’ groups or sectors that appears in the approved constitution in accordance to the voter’s list will be afforded an opportunity to nominate or elect the preferred representatives on the management committee.

“The Amakhosi representing the Jozini, uMhlabuyalingana and Pongola Local Municipalities are also invited. Enquiries regarding the gazette should be made to bofilatose@dws.gov.za,” Mavasa said.

Source: South African Government News Agency