“We were not aware of the contamination!” Tsogwane
Government have moved swiftly to prevent a potentially deadly blunder spiralling further out of control.
A contaminated borehole, which was allegedly reopened at the order of then acting president, Slumber Tsogwane has been shut down again.
Last Thursday, less than 24 hours after The Voice reported how the water from the borehole was thought to have killed two drinkers, Local Government and Rural Development Minister, Dr Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi is said to have called an urgent meeting with Southern District Council, which culminated in its closure.
Confirming the development, Tsogwane told The Voice, “The borehole was closed today (Thursday). We were not aware that it was contaminated. We just read about it now.
“We have therefore decided to close the borehole because even if some people say they want to use the water for washing, no one will be monitoring them to ensure that they do not consume the water.”
However, Tsogwane denied allegations that anyone had died because of drinking the borehole’s water.
His denial comes three days after Council Chairperson, Alec Seametso told a full council meeting of two casualties, which he claimed were a result of consuming water from the borehole.
“Councillor Matsorotsoro (Omphile Motlhajoe) is absent because two people in his ward have died due to drinking dirty water. One was buried of Friday and another one reportedly died this morning. The borehole which has been killing people has now been reopened for human consumption,” Seametso stated, adding that he was seriously concerned at the “cultivation of disease and deaths by allowing people to consume dirty water.”
Nevertheless, whilst Councillor Motlhajoe admitted that two people died in his ward – one from diarrhoea and the other a different ailment – he insisted Seametso had got his facts wrong.
“These two cases are not related to the borehole in question. Of course people drink from an open dam and dig for water at the local river, but the borehole in question is in Kanye not Ralekgetho ward,” Motlhajoe explained.
Asked why he did not correct Seametso when he made the damning allegations in the council meeting, the Southern district commissioner, Mmoloki Raletobana, who was present during the council debate replied simply, “Seametso is the one who can explain the deaths better.”
Raletobana further added that as far as he is aware the borehole in question is in Kanye and has not poisoned anyone.