CHOLERA has claimed at least 15 lives and more could be lost.
The deputy minister of health, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, deputy minister of water and sanitation David Mahlobo, Gauteng MEC for Health and Wellness Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko and other City of Tshwane officials visited Jubilee District Hospital to monitor the situation and undertake government's interventions in response to the cholera outbreak in the area.
Mahlobo and Dhlomo confirmed the 15 deaths and conveyed their sincere condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones.
Mahlobo said health facilities were hard at work, with a number of people being received and attended to.
"The MEC has been on the ground for quite some time including since the outbreak. The ministers of health and water and sanitation have assigned us. We have agreed that we are creating a command centre so that our response can be immediate and effective.
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"We will also bring the police at a particular point and also the defence force to handle the issues happening here," he said.
Mahlobo also said a team of experts had been established to deal with issues of scanning and mobility so that the outbreak could be contained.
"A formal investigation will be undertaken to determine what caused the contamination of water," said Mahlobo, adding that they would engage communities too.
Dhlomo said: "It's important to update people with this outbreak of cholera. We have 41 cases nationally."
"We have to do medical intervention as health workers. In terms of the source of the water challenge, we leave it to water experts to support us," said Dhlomo.
South African National Civics Organisation (Sanco) regional chairman, Abram Mashishi, said: "We call on all stakeholders to work together to find a solution to this crisis and prioritise the health and safety of the affected communities."
Forum 4 Service Delivery (F4SD) leader, Mbahare Kekana, said the crisis erupted way back when the ANC was still running the City of Tshwane.
He said the situation continued under the DA, which also failed to address it even after the South African Human Rights Commission released a report stating that the water was not fit for human consumption.
"To this date, millions of rands have been injected to fix the Rooiwal Treatment Plant but nothing has been done because there is no political will to address the situation," Kekana said.