COSATU Gauteng demands accountability and urgent action in the wake of the failure of the Rooiwal Water Treatment Project

07 November 2023

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) in Gauteng is deeply concerned about the ongoing water crisis faced by the residents of Hammanskraal, Tshwane, resulting from the troubling and highly controversial Rooiwal water treatment project. The project, which was intended to alleviate water shortages and provide safe and clean drinking water to the community, has instead left residents in dire straits while R295 million in public funds appear to have vanished without tangible results.

The Rooiwal water treatment project, with an allocated budget of R295 million, was expected to address the pressing water needs of the Hammanskraal community. However, the project has not only failed to deliver on its promises but has also left residents in a precarious situation, battling the harsh realities of water scarcity.

COSATU Gauteng firmly believes that access to clean and safe drinking water is a basic human right, and it is disheartening to witness the suffering of the Hammanskraal residents who have been denied this fundamental necessity for far too long. The water crisis has adverse implications on health, sanitation, and overall quality of life, and we stand in solidarity with the affected community.

We call for immediate and comprehensive action in response to the Rooiwal water treatment project debacle:

Probe and Accountability: We demand a thorough and impartial investigation into the circumstances that led to the failure of the Rooiwal water treatment project. Those responsible for mismanagement, corruption, or negligence must be held accountable.

Urgent Remediation: Immediate measures should be put in place to provide emergency relief to the residents of Hammanskraal. Temporary water supply solutions must be established while a long-term, sustainable solution is sought.

Transparency and Inclusivity: The government must ensure transparency in its communication with the affected community. Stakeholders, including community representatives and civil society, should be included in the decision-making process and must be kept informed of all developments.

Prioritizing Essential Services: This crisis underscores the importance of investing in and maintaining essential services, particularly in underserved communities. The government must prioritize the provision of clean water and sanitation to all South Africans.

COSATU Gauteng believes that access to basic services like clean water is not a privilege but a right, and the government has a duty to ensure that this right is upheld for all citizens. We stand united with the residents of Hammanskraal in their struggle for access to clean water and pledge our full support in seeking a resolution to this crisis.

The Federation remains dedicated to supporting the rights and welfare of the workers and communities in our province. The residents of Hammanskraal have suffered long enough, and it is time for their concerns to be addressed with urgency and diligence. We call on all stakeholders, including government authorities and service providers, to work together to rectify this dire situation swiftly and prevent further suffering in Hammanskraal.


Issued by COSATU Gauteng

Provincial Chairperson (Amos Monyela): 079 493 5002

Provincial Secretary (Louisah Modikwe): 066 182 2402 / 082 297 2659