Some Knysna residents threaten to boycott elections over water meter installation

Knysna and the Knysna Lagoon. Picture: Twitter

Knysna and the Knysna Lagoon. Picture: Twitter

Hornlee residents were called upon not to vote for any of the parties who voted for prepaid water meters in ‘only non- white areas’.

Community organisation, Hornlee United in Knysna, are threatening to boycott voting in the May elections in resistance to the installation of water meters by the municipality.

Secretary Avril Terblanche said in a statement that the council’s decision to implement the water meters was racist as it exclusively targeted communities of colour. Terblanche called on all Hornlee residents not to vote for any of the parties who voted for prepaid water meters in “only non- white areas”.

She said the parties included the Democratic Alliance (DA), the African National Congress (ANC) and the Congress of the People (COPE).

“We must, however, make it very clear that Hornlee United is a community organisation. Our only interest is the welfare of the community and we want our land back that was taken by apartheid.”

Knysna Municipality said the community’s resistance was based on information that was factually incorrect. Municipal spokesperson, Chumisa Kalawe, said the majority of the residents had welcomed the installation of water meters and installation was progressing well.

Approximately 283 water management devices have been installed to date.

“In Knysna, indigent consumers receive six kilolitres free water per month and normal households receive three kilolitres. We can assure you that you will definitely not lose your free monthly allocation.”

The advantages of having a prepaid meter included no more meter reading estimates, no more bill surprises, better control on consumption and promoting responsible use of resources, said Kalawe.

“Although the project is aimed at indigent and un-metered households, any household may apply to have the meter installed, if you wish to switch over. We already have had requests from residents residing in the other wards to have the Water Management Devices installed at their properties. Thus far the project has had positive reviews in other areas.”

African News Agency (ANA)

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