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The Deputy Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs launches the War on Waste and War on Leaks Projects

08 April 2014


The Deputy Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Ms Rejoice Mabudafhasi, today launched the War on Waste and War on Leaks projects in Butterworth, in the Mnquma Local Municipality in the Eastern Cape.

The War on Waste project was launched to showcase the work of the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) in its effort to preserve the environment and create job opportunities. The War on Leaks project, on the other hand, is one of the projects that form part of the Department of Water Affairs’ work to fight water loss. One of the main aims of the visit was for the Deputy Minister to note the interventions made by the department in promoting these efforts (waste and water management) and the implementation progress made by the municipality in this regard.

Speaking at the launch, Mabudafhasi, said “The Department of Environmental Affairs has, through its Environmental Protection and Infrastructure Programme (EPIP), funded the War on Waste project in Mnquma Local Municipality. This project will use labour intensive methods as per requirements of Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP). The War on Waste project was part of the proposals that were submitted by the municipality, following a call for proposals by the DEA. The project received an amount of R23, 5 million and will create 250 job opportunities for the local community”.

The project will address the challenge of waste management, job creation and skills development, whilst minimising and diverting waste that was meant to go to landfill sites. Revenue will be generated by the communities associated with the project by sustaining themselves through recycling initiatives. For some of the beneficiaries, such projects have allowed an opportunity for permanent employment.

Some of the aspects that the War on Waste project entails include support to Solid Waste Cooperatives to undertake waste management services at Mnquma Municipality; rehabilitation and closure of Magqudwana (main site), Ngqamakhwe and Centane landfill sites; encouraging sorting and recycling at Ibika landfill site using available recycling facilities; environmental education and awareness; as well as street cleaning in the municipal towns. The projects have successfully transformed the Mnquma Local Municipality from one of the dirtiest districts to one that will attract investment into the area.

“Through the War on Leaks project, the Department of Water Affairs aims to fix water leaks in households; government institutions such as hospitals, clinics, schools, education and create awareness about water conservation, whilst creating working or Small, Medium and Micro Enterprise (SMME) opportunities and skills development for young people. The Mnquma War on Leaks project has been allocated a budget of more than R2 million and 33 local youths have being recruited to roll out this project.” As part of the project’s launch today, the Deputy Minister also fixed leaking taps at Msobomvu Flats and Vulindlela Primary School.

Also present at the event were theMEC for Economic Development and Environmental affairs, Mr Jonas Mcebisi, Executive Mayor of Mnquma Municipality, Councilor Mntuwoxolo Ganjana, and MMC’s, Councillors and senior officials who took part in fixing leaking taps.

In concluding, Deputy Minister Mabudafhasi reminded those in attendance of the importance of such projects by highlighting that “prior to 1994, our people were reduced  to the status of being second citizens in their country of birth and denied basic services such as electricity, water , waste removal and a host of others including basic infrastructure necessary to improve our lives.”

To access the Deputy Minister’s speech, click on the link below:

>> Deputy Minister Rejoice Mabudafhasi’s speech during the launch of the War on Waste and War on Leaks Projects.

For media enquiries:

Mr Peter Mbelengwa, Spokesperson for the Deputy Minister
Cell: 082 611 8197