FS High Court orders Bloem Water to restore water supply to Mangaung residents

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Residents of the Mangaung Metro Municipality (MMM) breathed a sigh of relief as water was restored last night.

This follows after the High Court in Bloemfontein, Free State, once again ruled in favour of the troubled metro against the Bloem Water board yesterday, instructing them to discontinue the reduced water supply.

The Water Board reduced water supply to 30% to residents since Sunday after the metro failed to honour its debt of at least R449 million following numerous warnings by the board following court action between the two in July 2019.

The Metro’s municipal spokesperson, Qondile Khedama, says the municipality welcomes the ruling as it vindicates them from the lies peddled by the board in its recent statement over the payment of the debt.

Meanwhile, the board spokesperson, Maruping Rapudongoane, says they also welcome the ruling. However, the statement by the Metro that it has been paying consistently is not true because there wouldn’t have been reduced water supply. He adds that the board will also approach the court next week over the matter.

The metro says “we have always maintained that the resolution to this prolonged dispute can be found, amongst others, in the court of law and through mediation by the Ministry of Human  Settlements, Water and Sanitation”.

“We would like to reiterate that the Mangaung Metro has been consistent with monthly payments and the payment plan, as resolved during the National Treasury mediation meeting which took place on 4 July 2019,” it adds.

Khedama says the only amount that is not being paid is the amount in dispute and this is the same reason that forced the municipality to take the legal route; as one of the options.

He adds that the city is committed to service delivery and it will do it’s utmost best in ensuring that Mangaung ratepayers are treated with respect and that they receive the services they deserve.

“We will continue to commit ourselves to any solution that will bring this matter to its finality.” Residents of Mangaung Metro will be continuously updated on developments in this case,” he concludes.

OFM News/Lucky Nkuyane