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Major pipeline project to boost water supply to Mthatha by tapping into underutilized dam (07 February 2014)

OR Tambo District Municipality, today announced the achievement of a major milestone in the provision of water services in Mthatha as part of the King Sabata Dalindyebo Presidential Intervention (KSD PI)’s water and waste water infrastructure upgrade projects.

Amatola Water was appointed as the implementing agent for some 20 water and sanitation projects worth over R2, 729 billion and has been assisting the OR Tambo District Municipality to deliver on the intervention. 

The key objective of the projects is to ensure a reliable and stable water supply to the area, as well as enhance the rural livelihood of the surrounding communities by addressing the water and waste water infrastructure capacity.

“Water supply to the region will be enhanced by tapping into the capacity of the Mthatha Dam, which is the biggest dam in the Eastern Cape with a volume of 254 million cubic meters and is currently underutilized,” said OR Tambo District Municipality Mayor, Nomakhosazana Meth. 

The Mthatha Dam will feed into four supply corridors in the area via two major regional water treatment works at Thornhill and Rosedale, namely:

•   Rosedale to Nqadu
•   Rosedale to Libode and Ngqeleni
•   Thornhill to airport, Bedford hospital, military base and surrounding areas
•   Thornhill to Mqanduli via Viedgesville.

According to Cllr. Meth the dam is currently underutilized, however has enough capacity to supply quality water to the KSD, Nyandeni and Mhlontlo and Port St Johns local municipalities.

“Ultimately the supply area of Mthatha Dam will be extended to a 50km radius of supply and will significantly improve service delivery standards and the quality of life in the region, as the people in the surrounding rural areas will, for the first time in their history receive quality treated/ purified water for consumption,” she said.

A major milestone on the project includes a bulk pipe delivery taking place this week at three local sites in the area.  The steel pipes, ranging in diameter from 500mm to 600mm will be used in the construction of a 34km pipeline that will run through the Mqanduli via Viedgesville corridor, while the glass fibre reinforced polyester pipes which range between a diameter of 200 to 400mm are earmarked for the Mthatha Airport corridor.
The Mthatha Military Base, the Airport and an area in Zamukulungisa are used as storage sites for the pipes.

Cllr. Meth said the pipe delivery is one of the many physical accomplishments that Amatola Water Board has achieved since their appointment to assist OR Tambo District Municipality in October 2012.

“We are very pleased with the arrival of the first batch of pipes for the Mqanduli and airport corridors and are excited to move forward with a major project such as this one, that will improve service delivery to the communities surrounding Mthatha and Mqanduli,” she said.

Meth said she expects the last batch of pipes to be delivered by the end of this month.

Tenders for the airport and the Mqanduli via Viedgesville corridors have been advertised, while the actual construction work for the two corridors is anticipated to be completed by December 2015.


For more information contact:
1) OR Tambo District Municipality
Ms Nombasa Msebi
(Technical Director: Water Services)
Office: (046) 501 7050
Mobile: 079 211 4307
E-mail: nombasamsebi@hotmail.com

2) Amatola Water
Ms Connie Buso
(Marketing & Communications Manager)
Office: (043) 707 3700
Mobile: 082 226 2281
E-mail: cbuso@amatolawater.co.za