Water Utilities Corporation(WUC) is expected to take over water reticulation in Maun from Water Affairs with effect from April 1st 2013.
The take over was announced by WUC Corporate Communications Manager, Matilda Mmipi during Phase VI Stakeholders seminar in Maun on Wednesday.
Mmipi further explained that the takeover will include the supply of portable water and sewage systems.
Maun councillors however complained that they have been given a short notice to tell the community.
Dismissing the WUC take over as a way of ripping the community off their hard earned money because of exorbitant chargers significantly higher than Water Affairs charges, Councillor Tapoloso Mosika of Matlapaneng ward decried the fact that WUC will charge P1, 500 connection fee as opposed to P975 currently charged by Water Affairs.
“How can they hike prices like that when they are providing the very same services that were provided by Water Affairs,” he queried.
Another concerned councillor, Kaukapita Kaukapita of Sedia ward said that WUC was out to impoverish the Maun community “This can not be good news to the community especially those outside water supply map areas,” he said.
Responding to the councillors concern, the corporation’ spokesperson pointed out that the new costs will include both material and digging for connection.
“We will be digging and buying materials for you because under the Water Affairs era some did not dig well while some bought cheap materials and the corporation had to run unnecessary costs attending to burst pipes.” she said
Mmipi also warned against supplying neighbours or any other person with water because the practice was an offence punishable by law.
“Do not panic but you have to know that supplying water to your neighbour even if it’s by hosepipe is illegal according to the Water Act. When one has water connection which was not authorised by Water Utilities it attracts a penalty.
We may have been slack in identifying such people for prosecution but you have to know that it is illegal,” Mmipi pointed out.
She further explained that councils will decide on the number of stand pipes to be left in each village and pay bills for them.
She however highlighted that although such stand pipes will belong to councils, WUC will manage them to help those who cannot afford to connect water in their homes still have access to water.