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Nelson Mandela Bay's Executive Mayor, Cllr Athol Trollip,  has called upon learners to become ambassadors and messengers for the water saving and conservation programme that the Municipality is currently implementing. The Executive Mayor was speaking at the Water Week Awareness Day held in Uitenhage Town Hall today, March 16, 2017.
The Municipality decided to include  schools as one of the key focus areas in its Water Week Programme, specifically to raise awareness among learners and call for joint action, based on the high volume of water losses recorded at schools. These losses are attributed to water leaks through pipes, lack of knowledge about water saving measures, and poor sanitation infrastructure.
The City is currently subject to water restrictions, with supply dams at a total volume of less than 50 percent. The lowest dam -  Churchill  - has dwindled to  less than 30 percent.

Learner representatives from twenty schools from across Uitenhage, Despatch and surrounding areas attended the awareness event. 
"It is important to understand where water is coming from. It does not come from taps or rivers: it comes from the rain and follows a long and expensive process before it runs from our taps. We need you to be our messengers at your schools and at your homes. You have to spread the message that our City is faced with a serious water crisis."
"Our efforts of saving water could start with simple things, like being water wise when washing your hands and cars, brushing your teeth and flushing a toilet. Please take the message back to your schools and homes that, when brushing your teeth, you cannot leave the tap running. Assist us in spreading a message that we must take short showers, use a bucket when washing cars, and make sure that you report a water leak immediately to 0800 20 50 50," said the Executive Mayor.
Fifty local schools have been notified that they are among the highest users of water within the Metro, with the biggest consumer among them using a staggering 367 liters per learner per day and a total of more than 5000 kiloliters per month!
The Executive Mayor said learners had the power to influence the attitude and behaviours of their peers and family members. "If our water saving  message is captured correctly by the learners present, that will have a huge contribution towards  our efforts to save water,”he added.
A visibly enthusiastic Nomathamsanqa Primary School learner, Masibulele Diko (12), said that the information she received at the event was an eye-opener. "I take from this event a lot of valuable information that will not only contribute positively to my school, it will also help us to save a lot of water at home and in the process save money. I now understand the severity of the situation and the fact that water has no substitute,”said Diko.  
As part of Water Week, the Municipality, through its Infrastructure and Engineering Directorate, will visit schools and run competitions in which schools stand to win water-saving tools like water retention tanks.
Issued by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Communications Office.

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