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South Africa: Jericho Village's elderly struggle with water shortages

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Jericho, village de Madibeng, Afrique du Sud, Africanews

South Africa

In, South Africa -- naturally a water-scarce country currently facing a spate of water shortages, two hours drive from Johannesburg in the North West Province, Jericho village is situated in the Municipality of Madibeng. 

The name of the area "madibeng" means which means "a place of water" -- and has been viewed as a sort of a miraculous dwelling, as it has had running water since the country's transition to democracy in 1994.

And yet Jericho village has not seen a drop of water in 27 years.

Established over a hundred years ago and yet for Jericho residents, the dividends of democracy are yet to arrive. 

A local spoke to Aficanews. 

"Water is a problem..... Water will never come out of these taps again, it’s been too long. The taps have rusted. It’s been a very long time."

Like many parts of rural South Africa, urbanisation has forced most young people into the cities and towns. 

Jericho today resembles a nursing home with every second residence housing at least one elderly person and equipped with a water tank.

Water is sold and delivered by road.

Eva Zulu was born in Jericho and had to move back here in 1988 to care for her parents during their last days. 

Today she lives in the village -- navigating the water supply.

A laborious undertaking for the wheelchair-bound Eva who also looks after her bedridden husband as the household's primary caretaker. 

She explains her home's water situation. 

"You see our kids bought us this tank... so that when we have a little bit of money we can buy water and store it in there."

Despite protests or an order by the Human Rights Commission.
And even after placing the municipality under administration four times since 2006, hope has also run dry.

Requests to comment by Africanews correspondent in Jericho North West Province, Karabo Terrens were ignored by the mayor’s office.

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