The excessive price of ignoring the invisible, unsexy stuff

John Steenhuisen |

28 April 2022

John Steenhuisen says there isn’t a ribbon-cutting ceremony for unblocking a sewer so ANC overlooks it


28 April 2022

President Ramaphosa was fast to pin the KZN flood catastrophe on local weather change. And sure, that’s definitely a part of the issue. But whereas it might be a handy scapegoat, local weather change is definitely not the one difficulty right here.

We must be clear about what induced the big harm, in order that subsequent time a freak storm brings massive quantities of rain to the KZN coast, we’re higher ready to take care of it.

Because there will likely be a subsequent time. There have been at the very least six vital floods in eThekwini up to now six years, together with a catastrophic flood in 2019 the place 85 individuals misplaced their lives.

So it’s a matter of when, not if.


Every time there have been floods in eThekwini, specialists warned concerning the state of the metro’s stormwater drainage and about settlements positioned on flood plains. These warnings weren’t heeded.

It is the accountability of an area authorities to be sure that its communities are shielded from the worst results of such floods by making cities and cities flood-resilient.

This means giving city planners and engineers the total backing and finances to construct this resilience into communities by correct housing planning and infrastructure.

It additionally implies that the native authorities should do its precise job relating to issues like stormwater upkeep. Fix what’s damaged, clear what’s blocked, and change what’s outdated and crumbling.