NEWS
08/02/2018 14:11 SAST | Updated 08/02/2018 14:11 SAST

Western Cape Government Releases Extra R82.5m To Tackle Drought

The Western Cape Cabinet has approved an additional R82.5m to the provincial Department of Local Government for drought augmentation projects, a statement said on Thursday.

Morgana Wingard via Getty Images

The Western Cape Cabinet has approved an additional R82.5m to the provincial Department of Local Government for drought augmentation projects, a statement said on Thursday.

"This brings the total amount allocated by the department on water augmentation projects since 1 April 2017 to R108.7m," said James-Brent Styan, spokesperson for Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC Anton Bredell.

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The extra money will focus on municipalities bordering the City of Cape Town, and which rely on the same water supply system as the city. The funds will go towards measures to avoid running out of water there.

The municipalities are Saldanha Bay, Drakenstein and Swartland.

Morgana Wingard via Getty Images

"We remain committed to assist the city in combating the ongoing drought crisis by reducing the pressure on the greater system," the statement said.

Other towns already being assisted during the drought include Beaufort West and Ladysmith.

Bredell urged continued water savings.

Talks with the national government on further support were continuing, he said.

He said, to date, the Western Cape government had received R74m in disaster relief funding. Of that, 44% had already been spent, and the remainder was committed towards projects.

The national department had also granted an extension for spending of the allocated funds. This money has been allocated with strict instructions from national government:

- R40m towards agriculture for livestock feed;

- R20m for the City of Cape Town to assist in drilling into the aquifers;

- R14m for relief projects in two other municipalities: Bitou and Theewaterskloof.

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