Much-needed repairs to infrastructure in the eThekwini municipality is hampered because there is no welding gas available to workers.
This is according to a statement by eThekwini municipality councillor Mzamo Billy, who said crucial services in Durban have now been halted.
“The municipality’s senior officials confirmed that there was no welding gas available due to some departments owing the service provider,” Billy said.
Welding gas is often used to fix water leaks and major steel pipe bursts or cracks ranging from 100mm to 900mm in size.
The lack of welding gas therefore has a detrimental impact on the supply of water and the repair of major water-related complaints.
Billy said their information suggests there is a contract in place, but the service provider is refusing to deliver because of outstanding payments from units within the very same cluster.
“There are also critical service delivery projects which have been delayed due to the unavailability of welding gas,” Billy said.
“One of the projects where millions have been spent to upgrade the pipeline from Grange to Redcliffe Reservoir has still not been commissioned due to the unavailability of welding gas.”
The construction of the new pipeline feeding Redcliff Reservoir has been completed and now awaiting a tie that requires welding.
Sadly, the community in this area continues to have interrupted water supply and have been informed that the tie will not go ahead due to the unavailability of the vital welding gas.
The latest revelation followed a DA report that eThekwini municipality’s Water and Sanitation Maintenance store had empty shelves with no capacity to efficiently resolve water-related complaints.
“Instead, the municipality spokesperson, Musa Mayisela, reduced this tragedy to politics and blamed load shedding,” Billy said.