Too few taps in Goutrou

Water provided by an old truck
Water provided by an old truck
Water provided by an old truck

These residents have two communal taps, no electricity, no streetlamps and an old fire extinguishing truck, which is also used daily to supply water to the people, despite the fact that this water could be dirty and unhealthy.

Goutrou resident Piet Rooy said: “It is very difficult to get water because the communal taps are both more than 300 meters from my shack. The water from the truck is not clean, therefore I don’t use it for drinking and cooking, only for washing.”

In this same area a week ago, a 20-year old man burned to death in his shack. According to his family the fire was caused by a candle that fell down when he was asleep.

Another resident Leon White said: “I was the first one on the scene, and I also was the one who phoned the police. While waiting for the police we tried to stop the fire, by running to communal taps to fetch water with buckets. Unfortunately the taps were to far, so it was useless, because by the time we returned with water the fire was bigger.”

Pensioner Griet Maritz said: “It is very dangerous to even go to toilet at night, because it’s very dark outside without any streetlamps.”

Community leader Boetie Koopman said: “It’s against the Constitution of South Africa for a municipality to put people on plots which are not serviced with water and electricity. The municipality should really make an effort to provide basic services to these people.”

OurHealth spoke to one of the employees of the municipality who wants to stay anonymous. He assured  that the municipality is in the process of giving these services to the people. He also said that they are already busy laying water pipes to these shacks.


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