South Africa declares drought as a national disaster

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Sindhu Bharathi Anandan

The country of South Africa has declared drought as a national disaster. The residents of the country, especially in the city of Cape Town, had been witnessing severe drought for the past three years. The El-Nino effect that happened two years ago had lead to this water crisis and has never receded since then.

The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs had decided to announce it a disaster after having seen the severity and magnitude of the drought. The zero-day, after which there won’t be water running through the taps, was announced as April 12 initially. It was then assumed to be in the month of May and now the final zero-day that was recently revealed is June 4.

On account of this kind of announcement, the South African government has begun taking full-fledged operations to increase the supply of water to its citizens. More emphasis is been laid on the optimum usage and equal distribution of water. Agricultural productivity has become poor. 70 million rand( rupees 35 crores approx.) has been allocated solely for relief purpose.

The citizens had been forced to reduce water consumption to 50 litres per day per head. The collective measures taken by the citizens to conserve water were the prime reason for having the zero-day postponed.

The condition of South Africans is at stake. The citizens are trying to put maximum efforts to reduce consumption of water. Some hotels in Cape Town have been requesting their guests not to shower for a long time or rather avoid using baths.

With relief measures going on in full swing the severity of the situation is expected to abate.

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