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The recently restructured Umngeni-Uthukela Water Board has introduced its new members following the Cabinet’s approval on September 13, 2023. Water and Sanitation Minister Senzo Mchunu, accompanied by Deputy Minister Judith Tshabalala, met with the 12 newly-appointed board members in Kwa-Zulu Natal to discuss their mandate. The board is composed of experts in Science, Engineering, Law, Accounting, and Finance, and is led by Advocate Vusi Khuzwayo as Chairperson and Ms. Noluthando Mkhize as Deputy Chairperson.

The process of reconfiguring water boards began under Mchunu’s guidance in accordance with Section 28 of the Water Services Act of 1997. Mhlathuze Water was disestablished on June 30, 2023, and all staff, assets, and liabilities were transferred to Umgeni Water on July 1, 2023. The appointment of a new board followed this transfer, with the board set to serve a four-year term starting on October 1, 2023.

The new board members include Ms. Senamile Masango, Mr. Khanyisani Shandu, Ms. Sylvia Mhlongo, Mr. Lavandran Gopaul, Ms. Hlengiwe Mvubu, Mr. Timothy Cornish, Ms. Diana Hoorzuk, Mr. Sipho Mtolo, Mr. Kwazikwenkosi Mshengu, and Mr. Sibusiso Mkhize.

Minister Mchunu Highlights Responsibilities and Priorities

During the meeting, Minister Mchunu highlighted the responsibilities that the Department of Water and Sanitation and its entities hold, as dictated by the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. He emphasized the importance of ensuring that people have access to basic water and sanitation rights. Mchunu stated, “The Constitution of the Republic enshrines water as a right, as well as a healthy environment through basic sanitation. Our collective mission is to reach areas where people lack access to water and sanitation as basic rights, and that is our top priority.”

Mchunu also touched upon the ongoing reforms within the Department aimed at ensuring the sustainability of the water sector. He underlined the pressing need to offer necessary assistance to struggling municipalities. In terms of organizational matters, Mchunu encouraged the Board to prioritize the appointment of a Chief Executive, given that the organization has been without one for over two years.

Ministry and Department Pledge Support to New Board

In his closing remarks, Minister Mchunu expressed unwavering support from both the Ministry and the Department to the Board as they gear up to serve the people of KwaZulu Natal.

For additional information, please contact Kamogelo Mogotsi, Spokesperson for the Ministry, at 076 523 0085, or Wisane Mavasa, Spokesperson for the Department of Water and Sanitation, at 060 561 8935 / mavasaw@dws.gov.za.

Environmentalist and Outdoor Enthusiast. Amanda is a nature-loving, energetic, and enthusiastic environmentalist who has dedicated her life to exploring and protecting Cape Town's stunning natural landscapes. She is an experienced hiker, wildlife enthusiast, and advocate for sustainable tourism.

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