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Water Sector Policy Database (WSPD)

Policy Detail Information

Open Policy Document Open Policy Document
This document has been opened: 655 times to date.
Date Of Release: 05 Jun 2012
Date Of Expected Review: 05 Jun 2020
Date Last Updated: 11 Jun 2012
Policy Type: Strategies and Guidelines
Policy Level: Local
Department: Department of Water Affairs: Water Services Policy and Strategy
Contact Name: Mbentse Bekubuhle / Ndlovu Siboniso
Phone Number: 012 336 7451 / 336 7391
Fax Number: 012 336 6560
Email: /
Directorate: Water Resource: Policy and Strategy
Contact Name: Matho Gwala
Phone Number: 012 336 8768
Fax Number:
Topics covered:
Draft Legislations, Policies, Strategies,guidelines,etc.
Policy Precis:

This guide has been drafted in order to provide municipalities that are responsible for ensuring access to water and
sanitation services - Water Services Authorities (WSAs) – with a series of aspects to consider when planning their
localized strategies for achieving water services delivery to residents on privately-owned land. The guide is aligned
with all water sector legislation and should be read together with the Strategic Framework for Water Services (2003)
and the draft Water Services on Privately-owned Land Policy (2009). This guideline document is aimed at all municipal
stakeholders, councillors and officials and sets out policy issues and strategic aspects for WSAs to consider in fulfilling
their universal obligation to ensure water services to residents on privately-owned land. The provision of services
on privately-owned land is becoming increasingly significant in various sectors including water services, electricity and
health services.
The Department of Water Affairs (DWA) is responsible for drafting policy on the delivery of water services; and this
responsibility is further emphasized in the Strategic Framework for Water Services, approved by Cabinet in September
2003. Municipalities have a “universal service obligation”. All residents, wherever they may live, are entitled to receive at
least a basic level of water and sanitation services.
Privately-owned land is any land that is not public land or land owned, controlled or leased by the state but is owned or
under the control of a single private individual or entity or group of private individuals collectively (and includes tribal
and communal owned land). Ownership of private land is a “bundle of rights” defining a relationship between private
individual/s or entities with regard to land and not a direct relationship between private individual/s or entities and land.
In common law, ‘real tangible immovable property’ is the combination of interests in land and improvements thereto and
‘real property’ rights are rights relating to the land - these rights include ownership and usage - and private land owners
can grant rights to persons or entities in the form of leases, licenses and servitudes.

Section Summary

  Section Number Section Heading Section Description
The 2003 Strategic Framework for Water Services Ensuring access to efficient, affordable, economical and sustainable water sources is a Constitutional obligation for all municipalities. This section of the guide explains how water services to residents on privately-owned land fits into the overall legislative and policy framework for municipal water services – the 2003 Strategic Framework for Water Services. The Strategic Framework for Water Services (SFWS) approved by Cabinet in September 2003 refers to the WSA’s universal service obligation – “Water Services Authorities have a responsibility to ensure that all people living within their jurisdiction are progressively provided with at least basic water and sanitation services (first step up the ladder). This includes people living on privately-owned land (for example, farm dwellers) and others who are provided for by Intermediaries (see Section 3.5.2. of the SFWS 2003)”. The Strategic Framework also sets out the sector’s targets for

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