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Media Advisory: The SAHRC’S KwaZulu-Natal Inquiry on access to water has been rescheduled to commence from Monday, 15 – 19 August 2022

26 JULY 2022

Attention: Editors and Reporters

The South African Human Rights Commission (the Commission) in the KwaZulu-Natal will hold a Provincial Inquiry on access to water in KwaZulu-Natal. The Inquiry will be held in Durban and will commence from Monday, 15 August 2022 and continue until Friday, 19 August 2022.

In recent years, the Commission in KwaZulu-Natal has been inundated with complaints relating to challenges of access to water in various districts in the province. This issue of poor or no access to water remains a current day-to-day challenge for many residents, communities, schools, businesses, and other organisations across the province. These challenges have been highlighted to a great extent by various media reports. Most Municipalities responses to the complaints are inadequate in that they are unable to provide appropriate and sustainable redress to the affected communities. As such these complaints amount to a prima facie violation of the basic human right to have access to sufficient clean water, and given the far-reaching impact of these challenges on the affected communities, there is a need for a strategic intervention to find short, medium and long term solutions.

The Inquiry will be presided over by a Panel that will comprise:

•    The Chairperson of the Panel – Commissioner Philile Ntuli
•    The Deputy Chairperson of the Panel – Commissioner Chris Nissen
•    If required, external expert/s co-opted by the Panel

The Inquiry shall inquire into, make findings, report on and make recommendations and/or directives concerning the following broad and overarching issues for investigation:

•    The extent of the challenges experiences by the communities in KwaZulu-Natal relating to access to clean drinking water;
•    The systemic nature of the violations;
•    The extent to which the organs of state have respected, protected, promoted, and fulfilled the right to sufficient water;
•    The reasonableness of measures including legislation, by-laws, policies, and programmes adopted by organs of state to ensure the realisation of the right to sufficient water.

The aim of the Inquiry is to determine whether the water service authorities within the KwaZulu-Natal Province have violated residents’ rights to access clean drinking water as provided for in national legislation as well as in the Constitution, and if so, what interventions are being implemented by the state to resolve and prevent the recurrence of the violations.

Anyone with information in the province that can assist the Commission in this investigation is invited to make oral and or written submissions. This includes submissions from identified government departments, state entities, business chambers, communities and other interested parties for the purposes of the inquiry.

Interested parties who wish to make submissions, may do so by no later than Monday 08 August 2022 using the following options:
•    By emailing their submissions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
•    Sending a WhatsApp voice note to 0714462333
•    Writing to the Kwa-Zulu Natal Provincial Office
o    PO Box 1456
The Inquiry will be live streamed on the Commission’s website (www.sahrc.org.za), Facebook (South African Human Rights Commission) and YouTube (SAHRC1) pages. Stream links to be shared closer to the event.


For further information contact the Commission’s Acting Provincial Manager in KwaZulu Natal, Ms. Pavershree Padayachee on Tel: 031 304 7323, Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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The Human Rights Commission is the national institution established to support constitutional democracy. It is committed to promote respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for everyone without fear or favour.

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