Feedback: May Jukskei Water Forum Meeting

Written by  Anthony Duigan Wednesday, 25 May 2016 10:50
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This is my feedback from the May Jukskei Water Forum meeting (18 May) attended by civil society representatives and senior officials from Joburg Water (JW).  The aim of this Forum is to ensure management action, official accountability and civil society involvement in getting the Jukskei River system to full health.


1.       Agreed that the Forum does not have all the responsible parties present.  Those missing -  Environment and Infrastructure Services Department (EISD) and Johannesburg Roads Agency (City of Joburg) and Department of Water and Sanitation (National)  -  will be approached by Etienne Hugo (Acting Chief Operations Officer: Joburg Water) for the relevant people in each department to attend future Forum meetings. 

2.       The monthly Forums will be organised around a focused agenda: 

a.       Reported and identified incidents of pollution

b.       Who is accountable and what action is being taken

c.       A schedule to monitor action, updated monthly.

3.       Incidents:

a.       Pollution from the Johannesburg Gas Works in Cottesloe.  This is leaching into the Braamfontein Spruit.  The Deputy Director of Water Quality and Catchment Management, Daniel Masemola, has already been informed of the situation.  His action is awaited.

b.       Dainfern Pipe to Northern Works.  Initial investigations showed no structural damage despite theft of some of the covering.  A permanent siphoning by-pass is to be designed in the 2017/18 financial year so that the pipe can be investigated from the inside.

c.       Northern Works.  Head of Works screens were damaged several weeks ago resulting in sewage bypassing the screens, blocking the settling tanks and damaging further infrastructure.  The end result was a series of sewage flows into the Jukskei during April & May, reported to Armour by residents.  Reggie Makoane, in overall charge of Northern Works, reported that repairs were being done, one tank was up and running in mid-May and the service provider was on site on May 18 to give quotes for the repair of the second settling tank.  Other work already underway to improve the operation of the Works includes: desludging of Dam 01 (completed by November 2016); retrofitting electro-mechanics on Unit 3 (starting end May);  ongoing work to upgrade the screens; installing new pumps on Dam 01.  Total sewage spills in April 2016 – 9 (2015 – 24).

d.       Steyn City Pump Station.  Taken over by Joburg Water.  Dainfern Station to be de-commissioned by end of May.

e.       Lonehill Dam.  Overflow has exposed cables.  This has been reported to Pule Makena of EISD, the responsible Department.

f.        Watercombe Dam in Farmall.  This has been polluted by sewage inflows for a lengthy period.  A consultant is cleaning this dam and JW will do a flow-metre check on sewage inflows to identify the source and severity.

g.       Alexandra.  This is the heart of many of the problems affecting the Jukskei catchment area and involves several different parties from CoJ.  The intention is to establish a Forum for this specific zone of the catchment.

h.       Sewers.  Consultants have been appointed to replace the steel boxes that link the storm-water and sewage systems.  These are constantly damaged and parts stolen.  They are being replaced with  polymer boxes.  Logan Munsamy, the Network Manager, is overseeing this.

This is circulated in the interests of informing civil society, and involving them, in ensuring the river system is maintained and brought to the levels of quality and health we need.

Read 486 times Last modified on Wednesday, 25 May 2016 10:53

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