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AfriForum ready to drag VDM back to High Court

News - Date: 20 March 2017

Written by: Isabel Venter / Viewed: 521


AfriForum’s branch in Louis Trichardt is almost ready to drag the Vhembe District Municipality (VDM) back to court.

Almost five years have passed since the local AfriForum branch managed to get a High Court order that forced the VDM to deliver a reliable and consistent flow of water to residents in and around Louis Trichardt. On Tuesday, local AfriForum chairman Mr Wally Schultz confirmed that the new court papers have been delivered to the VDM Mayor, Cllr Florence Radzilani.

Schultz explained that AfriForum were out for VDM’s blood because of the unsecured and dysfunctional state of the town’s existing borehole infrastructure. “The project [boreholes] was worth R20 million and is now in a state of total dysfunction,” said Schultz.

The new court order will ask the court to force the VDM to re-instate this borehole project. According to Schultz, this option is preferable to replacing the Alabsini pipeline (currently Louis Trichardt’s primary water source) as it will ensure a constant water supply to town.

Replacing the Albasini pipeline, Schultz explained, is not practical as the Nandoni Dam project is scheduled to replace it. The question remains exactly when the Nandoni project will be completed. The project has been slowed down time and again because of court cases and incompetent contractors. “Residents cannot be expected to ‘wait and see’,” said Schultz. “They need water now. Therefore, the only realistic and workable route to follow is for the VDM to start from scratch and implement the borehole action plan,” he added.

In addition to the borehole plan, AfriForum will also petition the court to reconstitute the previous water steering committee to oversee the borehole action plan as it had been ordered in the first court order that was awarded to them in 2012.

“The plight of desperate residents cannot be ignored any longer. They cannot be forced to endure constant water stoppages. It’s inhuman and unconstitutional,” said Schultz. He added they they have set a court date in the South Gauteng High Court to hear their case on 28 March.



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Signing off on the last documents that were required for AfriForum's urgent cout application against the VDM are, from left to right, Gert van der Westhuizen (witness), Celeste Venter (local attorney), Corné Smith (AfriForum deputy chairman) and Wally Schultz (AfriForum chairman). Photo supplied.


Isabel Venter

Isabel joined the Zoutpansberger and Limpopo Mirror in 2009 as a reporter. She holds a BA Degree in Communication Sciences from the University of South Africa. Her beat is mainly crime and court reporting.


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Afriforum, louis trichardt, vhembe district municipality, court