THE first water from the Nooitgedacht Water Scheme was delivered recently, marking the finalisation of Phase 3 of the project which is meant to augment water supply to the Nelson Mandela Metro and surrounds.
The original scheme was commissioned in 1993 with a capacity of 70ml/day. The Nooitgedacht Water Treatment Works receives its raw water from the Gariep Dam which is situated up country and is therefore not affected by local droughts.
The Metro has over the last number of years, carried out the planning, design, tender preparation, contract administration and contract supervision for the augmentation of the Nooitgedacht supply scheme.
The Department of Water and Sanitation intervened and appointed the Amatola Water Board as an implementing agent for phase 3 of this project. The project completion date was initially set for June 2021 and later moved to September 2021 faced delays owing to budget constraints and contractual matters which have since been resolved.
During a working session in the province last year in August, Water and Sanitation Minister Senzo Mchunu was asked by former mayors and later by the business sector to intervene in a bid to end the delays.
On 29 March 2022, the contractor conducted a water supply shutdown that was required to carry out the final connection for Phase 3. According to the department, the work was a success, and the Nooitgedacht Water Treatment Works is now delivering about 190 megalitres of water per day, of which 70 megalitres is being transferred via the Stanford Road Booster Pump Station to the Western areas.
“We are… elated that we’ve released the first drops on time, as promised to the citizens. This has been a long time coming and we are indeed grateful,” Mchunu said.
“The Metro has been experiencing drought for the past seven years and with the constant threat of ‘Day Zero’, this comes as a reassurance that water will be provided to our people. The realisation of these first drops is through the concerted efforts of all – government (at all spheres), the private sector and the citizens – the social compact which the President has been emphasising.”
He encouraged residents of Nelson Mandela Bay Metro and all South Africans to continue to use water sparingly,