DAY ZERO COUNTDOWN – 73 water days to go for Cape Town

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CAPE TOWN. January 29 (ANA) – Cape Town has only 73 days to go before Day Zero dawns — the day (12 April) the water supply is turned off and the city becomes the first major one to run dry after failing to mitigate the consequences of a three-year drought.

** City of Cape Town to activate disaster operations centre for water crisis ‘Day Zero’

The City of Cape Town will shut off the water supply to taps when dams reach a collective level of 13.5 percent, the city said on Sunday. On Monday, the city would activate the disaster operations centre (DOC) to execute the city’s water disaster plan which would take effect in the event of the so-called “Day Zero”, when the city officially runs out of water.

“While the city is focusing all its efforts on beating back Day Zero, we need to be prepared for a scenario where we take control of the city’s water supply in order to extend it into the winter months. We will shut off supply to taps when our dams reach a collective level of 13.5 percent,” senior city officials said in a statement on Sunday.

** ‘Day Zero’ in Cape Town a ‘DA invention’, says Western Cape ANC

The African National Congress in the Western Cape is happy with the water and sanitation department’s “emphasis that the very concept of #DayZero is a DA [Democratic Alliance] invention”, the ANC in the province said on Sunday. The ANC in the Western Cape met Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane on Friday, both as a political organisation to which the minister accounted and on behalf of “multiple formations in society who are seeking answers and clarity from the department on its plans to avert the dreaded day zero”, the ANC said in a statement.

“The ANC is happy with the department’s emphasis that the very concept of #DayZero is a DA invention that translates to nothing more than an unnecessary tool of rattling residence on a pseudo-judgment day rhetoric,” the ANC said.

** Water crisis hits Cape Town tourism, cancellations from visitors – industry body

The drought-induced water crisis in the Western Cape province, which could run out of supply in April if there are no rains, has hit the key tourism sector with visitors cancelling trips, an industry official said on Friday.

Officials in Cape Town, South Africa’s tourism capital which boasts world renowned attractions such as Table Mountain, have tightened water restrictions to just 50 litres per person each day effective February 1, from the current 87 litres, as it faces the real risk of taps running dry from April 12, dubbed “day zero”.

“The water crisis is having an impact on tourism. We have been informed by our members that they been receiving cancellations from both international and domestic travellers,” Cape Town Tourism CEO Enver Duminy said, without giving numbers. “Prospective visitors have questions and are looking for clarity regarding the water crisis and contingency plans for Day Zero. As long as there is uncertainty about the water crisis, there will be an impact,” Duminy said in a written response to questions from the African News Agency.

African News Agency,