WIT Press

Challenges Regarding Potable Water Supply Management By South African Municipalities


Free (open access)





Page Range

55 - 64




538 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


E. J. Nealer & E. S. Van Eeden


Local government in South Africa (SA) has come a long way from the period when there were over 800 racially segregated municipalities scattered all over the country. Since the new Constitution took effect in October 1996 and the Local Government: Municipal Demarcation Act was promulgated in July 1998, the municipalities have been merged into currently 284 municipalities which now cover the country in a ‘wall-to-wall’ manner, and are focused on the provision of an increased number of diverse and complex basic municipal services to geographical areas and citizens that were maybe previously neglected. To achieve the last-mentioned, the municipalities’ outer boundaries have been re-demarcated, newly merged municipalities with new organisational structures and policies have been established and transformed organisational arrangements have been incorporated for more accessible and transparent citizen participation (Craythorne, D.L. 2006. Municipal administration: The handbook. Cape Town: Juta. p. 51-54). This paper highlights the nature and extent of a transformed local government sphere in South Africa, some important legislation, and some relevant challenges regarding water affairs and municipal governance. Hopefully this research will contribute to the cultivation of an environment conducive to consolidating local governance and water management knowledge creation in the local government sphere of SA. Keywords: municipality, diversity and complexity, environmental management, potable water, hydrological and hydro-geological information, water supply management, water supply related legislation.


municipality, diversity and complexity, environmental management,potable water, hydrological and hydro-geological information, water supplymanagement, water supply related legislation