Health Department issues Cholera warning for the festive season

Health Department issues Cholera warning for the festive season

Cholera detected in samples taken by AfriForum in Vaal river

AfriForum and Save Ngwathe took water samples from the Vaal river near Parys and they have tested positive for cholera.

Health Department issues Cholera warning for the festive season

Health Department issues Cholera warning for the festive season

AfriForum has confirmed that the water samples taken from the Vaal river near Parys tested positive for cholera. 

AfriForum and Save Ngwathe took the samples on Tuesday, 23 May following the outbreak of cholera in parts of the country.


According to AfriForum, an accredited laboratory took water samples at different locations in this town under the supervision of a water specialist.

The organisation further said that the first water sample taken at the outlet of the water works was not contaminated with cholera. The second water sample taken from a residential house in Parys tested negative for cholera but was infected with E. coli. 

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The third water sample was taken in the Vaal River, approximately 10 metres downstream from a manhole that has been pouring sewage into the river for some time. It is this very water sample that is contaminated with cholera and E.coli. 

Although AfriForum is still waiting for the official results, the laboratory has already notified the organisation of the results due to the seriousness of the matter.

AfriForum said that it is extremely worrying that the withdrawal point for Vredefort’s water is only 1 km from the sewage spill. It is precisely in Vredefort where there are also confirmed cases of cholera and where a resident died from this virus.

There are reportedly several places where the raw sewage flows into the river due to infrastructure that is burnt out or is simply not available, load shedding and the fact that there is no emergency assistance such as generators or emergency pumps.

AfriForum and Save Ngwathe have since appealed to residents of all the towns in the Ngwathe Metro to not drink tap water before it has been boiled. 

AfriForum’s District Coordinator for the Mooi River, Alta Pretorius said he sincerely hopes that the authorities and especially the Department of Water and Sanitation realise the vital importance of this problem and intervene at the incompetent municipality. 

“The help that AfriForum has been offering for the last two years has been ignored time and again and now innocent people are paying for it with their lives,” he said. 

This comes as the Gauteng Department of Health confirmed a cholera outbreak in Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria. 

The death toll currently sits at 22. 

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