Friday, November 28, 2008

CSIR - "There's no water crisis"

History will prove Anthony Turton's vision is correct. In a time of growing recession and higher staple food prices, Xenophobia locally and aborad will become more common. Once this process is further underway, if other impacts are added, it is difficult NOT to imagine a full scale suburban revolt as homeonwers seek to look after their families, moving in armed mobs against similar groups.

In this sense service delivery becomes a matter of survival - in future - and cannot be over-emphasised or prioritised.

CSIR president and CEO Sibusiso Sibisi told a news conference that he deemed Turton’s reference in his presentation to the “uhuru decade” and the link to graphic images of public violence offensive, and he made the call to withdraw the paper from the council’s Science Real and Relevant Conference.

When Sibisi was asked if the CSIR shared Water and Forestry Minister Lindiwe Hendricks’s view expressed in Parliament in February that there was no water crisis, he would not reply directly, saying that the parameters of a crisis had to be defined.

He made it clear, however, that the CSIR’s view was not contrary to that of the minister.

Although Turton offered to amend the presentation, Sibisi said it was rejected as it would have entailed too much “to and fro” in the time available.

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