ActionSA Forges Ahead with the Public Inquiry, Summons Tshwane Mayor on the Hammanskraal Water Issue

The Hammanskraal Water Crisis Panel has issued an invitation to the Mayor of Tshwane to appear before a public hearing to account for the ongoing water crisis in the area.

This follows the announcement by ActionSA last month that it will hold public hearings into the Hammanskraal water crisis and give residents and experts the opportunity to put forward their perspectives.

Whether the Mayor of Tshwane elects to be accountable to the residents of Hammanskraal and engage in this process is entirely up to him, but any refusal to show would be another effort to duck the issue in a long line of Mayors who have done so since 2016.

The announcement followed an inspection of the Rooiwal water treatment plant last month, which supplies water to the Hammanskraal residents, by Herman Mashaba and Abel Tau.

The Hammanskraal water issue has been in existence for nearly two decades now and over the years, it has gotten worse with no signs of improving. Public interest in the matter peaked in 2017 after the 2016 election campaign produced many promises to the residents of Tshwane and Rooiwal but resulted in no action.

It has been revealed to ActionSA that a R290 million tender was awarded to a joint venture that includes a company owned by state capture accused Edwin Sodi, linked to the asbestos deal in the Free State. 

We are pleased to announce that the hearings will take place during the weekend of 16 – 18 April 2021 and that an independent panel has been finalized, which include a water expert, human rights lawyer, religious and community leaders.

The panel will be chaired by Professor Jonas Leaka Letsoalo (Adv.): Professor Letsoalo is an admitted advocate of the Supreme Court since 1981 to date.

He has worked as a senior lecturer in public law at the then University of the North, now University of Limpopo and worked as a public prosecutor amongst other.

He holds a B.Luris qualification from University of the North. 1971. LLB from Unisa. 1980. LLM in human rights from University of Johannesburg.2006 to mention but a few.

Dumizulu Nkwanyane: A 30-year-old community activist who continues to actively advocate for social justice. He holds a national diploma in Journalism and a BTech in Journalism. He obtained both from the Tshwane University of Technology.

He has reported on the Hammanskraal water issue while working for community media including Moretele Times and Moretele FM in Hammanskraal.

Pete Graham: water expert and owner of Singakwazi Aid a Public Benefit Organisation, started in 2008 dedicated to the upliftment to vulnerable communities with specialisation in water and sanitation.

Victor Wegerle: from Singakwazi Aid: Head of Operations. Victor has spent more than 30 designing, building and reconditioning sewage pump stations across South Africa.

Kgoshi Kekana: of Amandebele ba Lebelo tribal authority: Chief Kgomotso Cornelius Kekana is a traditional leader in the second house of Amandebele ba Lebelo.

A position he has occupied since the year 2000. He leads the large part of Hammanskraal which include Majaneng, Suurman and Mashemong amonst others.

Reverend Thembelani Jentile (Dr.): A pastor at Mamelodi Baptist Church, the secretary general of the Baptist Convention of South Africa and a member of the South African Council of Churches.

Dr Jentile is also a research fellow at the University of Free State in the department of religious studies with focus on Church and State, Liberation Theology, church, and community development.

Other panellists include representatives from the CSIR, Magalies water and Hammanskraal resident’s forum. The Invitation was also extended to the City of Tshwane municipality and the SAHRC

ActionSA is proud of the panel that has been assembled and confident that they will apply their minds to the issue without fear or favour. The people of these communities deserve justice for the fundamental local government failure that they have endured from a City fast becoming renown for is delinquency in fulfilling the human right to water.