South Africa

Makana municipality ordered to address sanitation problems in Makhanda after sewage spills

Makana municipality ordered to address sanitation problems in Makhanda after sewage spills

The Makana municipality has been ordered to address sanitation problems in Makhanda.

The Legal Resources Centre (LRC), acting on behalf of 10 Makhanda residents, obtained the court order on Tuesday in the Grahamstown high court.

“The order compels the municipality to take immediate action to address the sanitation problems experienced by residents in Makhanda. The order was obtained by agreement between the parties, following the municipality’s failure to file answering papers,” the LRC said in a statement.

The court ordered the municipality to, within 15 days of the date of the order, take all the necessary steps to contain the sewage spills at the sites indicated by the 10 residents, the LRC said.

The municipality was also ordered to submit a report to the court within 30 days, setting out all the active sewage spills in Makhanda, together with a budget and a plan to fix these.

“The spills must then be fixed within 60 days after the report is filed. Part B of the application was postponed to allow the municipality to decide whether they want to oppose the relief sought. Part B of the application is aimed at compelling the municipality, the national and provincial government to generate a plan, along with a budget, for the upgrade of the waste water treatment works.

“The plan will also need to address the upgrade and replacement of the infrastructure that causes the spills, such as the outdated pipes. The municipality has until June 23 2020 to file answering papers if they wish to oppose this relief,” said the LRC.