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The parliamentary portfolio committee on water and sanitation has issued a scathing warning to the department, saying its ongoing failure to release water quality reports is illegal. The water and sanitation department, which has failed to consistently release the report measuring the quality of the country’s water resources since 2014, appeared before the committee on Wednesday. This means water users have in the past four years not had any assurances about the quality of water used. However, those in towns and cities are an exception, as municipalities have released such reports. The “green drop” report is a status given to municipalities that comply with good wastewater discharge standards, while the “blue drop” report provides information on the quality of drinking water.

The portfolio committee said on Wednesday the department’s actions are illegal. The committee hit out at “laxity” in the department, which is not fulfilling its obligation to release the report annually. ...

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