Home Economy Expensive water leaks: R10bn lost per year

Expensive water leaks: R10bn lost per year


Every year approximately R10 billion of taxpayers’ money evaporates thanks to water leaks.

41% of the country’s fresh drinking water is being lost when burst pipes spew it out. However, there are even more issues contributing to such a tremendous waste.

In 2015, a project was launched to tighten the screws on water leaks. About 15,000 artisans were trained in the framework of “War on Leaks” programme. They were to be employed by municipalities to fix leaks in homes, schools and public buildings across South Africa.

With R3 billion spent, the project turned out to be just a pipe dream. Most of the recruits neglect their responsibilities and prefer sitting at home while being paid their stipend for no actual work done.

Officials are fighting the allegations of mismanagement yet admit that the project has had some problems. According to the Department of Water and Sanitation, training continues for the second generation of plumbers who will in time, hopefully, save water and money.


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