South Africa 11.7.2018 01:04 pm

WATCH: Police fire rubber bullets as Hammanskraal residents protest dirty water

Andre Potgieter, community leader of Zone 2 in Hammanskraal, is seen at the Rooiwal Water Treatment Plant, 3 May 2018, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles

Andre Potgieter, community leader of Zone 2 in Hammanskraal, is seen at the Rooiwal Water Treatment Plant, 3 May 2018, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles

The problem of dirty water, which has caused sickness in the area, has been ongoing for almost 10 years, according to a resident.

A shutdown of Hammanskraal township in Tshwane is set to continue until the City of Tshwane does something about the dirty water residents are forced to drink, protesters have said.

It has been reported that police and security guards have been using rubber bullets to disperse residents of the township’s Temba area.

All major roads have been blocked, and tyres have been burning in the area.

The shutdown also saw Temba’s Jubilee Mall brought to a standstill as entrances were blocked, and people were not allowed in.

Residents, armed with sticks, rocks and bricks created blockades, forcing motorists to find alternative routes.

The problem of dirty water, which has caused sickness in the area, has been ongoing for almost 10 years, according to resident Joseph Baloyi, who told The Sowetan the City pretended that there was no problem.

Baloyi said he and many others objected to the fact that they were forced to pay for undrinkable water.

READ MORE: New hope for foul water in Hammanskraal

“When we complain, we are told the water is drinkable. They must come here and drink this water and prove to us that it is drinkable.”

According to Baloyi, the water has foam in it and stinks when boiled. He added residents suffering from extreme diarrhoea packed Jubilee Hospital due to the water, and that residents were forced to buy their own bottled water to avoid this fate.

He himself has been a victim of this, he says. “On Saturday I had to consult a doctor with stomach cramps. The doctor confirmed that I was sick because of dirty water.”

Baloyi said Hammanskraal would be shut down until they got clean drinking water.

On Monday, The Citizen reported the City of Tshwane is about to dredge the Rooiwal Waste Water Treatment Plant, which has been the alleged cause of pollution and contaminated drinking water in Hammanskraal.

Tshwane MMC for utility services Darryl Moss announced the tender for dredging the plant had closed, and was in the process of adjudication.

The plant had been the alleged cause of pollution in the Apies River with sludge, faeces and other objects flowing into the river since most of the works were at a standstill, with at least R60 billion required to address all the issues.

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