International Journal of Business and Social Science

ISSN 2219-1933 (Print), 2219-6021 (Online) DOI: 10.30845/ijbss

Accounting For Equitable Access And Affordable Water Services In South Africa: Case of the Lephalale Local Municipality, Limpopo Province
Selina Magugudi Makgatho, Mavhungu Elias Musitha (PhD)

The study assessed accounting for equitable access and affordable water services in the Lephalale Local Municipality. The residents in the area have a problem with water services. According to Lephalale Local Municipality’s Integrated Development Plan (2020), this was attributed to the infrastructure which had aged to provide water. The study used a mixed-method design that adopted purposive sampling. The sample size of this study was 100 participants drawn from municipal officials (20), councillors (5), and water services users who were the consumers of water within Lephalale Local Municipality (75). The study has found that in the Lephalale Local Municipality, there was no equitable access to water provision. This was because there were residents who still travelled 30 minutes to get water while others had household connections. The same was true for affordability, where others were able to afford it, and some could not afford household connections. Further, the study concluded that fees for infrastructure connections created water inequality for households as they excluded the poor from getting household water connections. Finally, the study found that it was not clear which households were paying for the water bills in the municipality. This study recommended that the provisions of the Reconstruction Development Programme should be implemented to provide equity in water services to all. The Department of Water Affairs should ensure that integrated management is in place to provide water resources to all the residents even beyond Lephalale. An Integrated Development Plan should take into consideration the challenges that rural and urban areas faced before the democratic dispensation to bring services to all residents on an equal basis.

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