Leak Detection Team: Champions in water conservation

The leak detection team’s unwavering commitment and diligent efforts play a pivotal role in safeguarding Kouga’s precious water resources. The team are (from left) Benedict Hill, Naython Korkee, and Magendran Moodley. 

KOUGA – Like silent guardians of the water supply, Kouga Municipality’s leak detection team has been on a covert mission since its inception on 16 May 2022.

Their task?

To stem the flow of wasted water by ferreting out leaks hidden beneath the municipality’s surface.

Despite facing obstacles along the way, these unsung heroes have remained undeterred, fuelled by a collective determination to safeguard Kouga’s most precious resource.

Their journey has been one of trial and triumph, with each challenge met head-on and overcome through sheer grit and the unwavering support of other departments and individuals within Kouga.

In the 2022/2024 financial year, the team responded to 116 incidents, resulting in an estimated saving of 43 288kl of water, valued at approximately R6 360 000. As we approach the conclusion of the 2023/2024 financial year, with three months remaining, the team has already attended to 93 incidents. The swift response has led to a conservation of 12 747kl of water, amounting to a value of R1 873 809.

Success stories

“One of the team’s significant triumphs was the successful registration and licensing of their vehicle after two years of persistent efforts,” said Kouga Executive Mayor, Hattingh Bornman. “This achievement has not only provided a moral boost, but also fuelled their determination to intensify their endeavours in reducing water losses across the municipality.”

Additionally, the team has made impressive progress in minimising water losses. A crucial element of their efforts revolves around detecting leaks in bulk water infrastructure that are not visible on the surface.

One such exercise revealed a staggering loss of over 600 000 litres of water in just one month from a single property, even though it is not within their mandate to identify internal leaks on private property. To put this into perspective, the amount of water lost at this residence is equivalent to the daily consumption of the entire Ocean View.

The team is also engaged in managing the Top 20 Water Consumers per area by ensuring the accuracy of meters and providing monthly reports on malfunctioning water meters.

“This underscores the critical importance of their work in water conservation and demand management,” said Bornman.

Beyond leak detection

The team’s impact extends far beyond leak detection.

“By detecting leaks early on, they not only prevent water wastage but also help prevent damage to Kouga’s road infrastructure and reduce claims on private property resulting from infrastructure failures,” said Bornman. “They, furthermore, reduce the impact of raw sewer spillages that may enter the environment undetected.”

According to Bornman, the leak detection team serves as an asset to the municipality, fulfilling an essential and critical function in addressing water conservation and demand management issues.

“Their unwavering commitment and diligent efforts play a pivotal role in safeguarding Kouga’s precious water resources and ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come,” he said.

Director of Electro and Mechanical Services aims to power municipality’s future

Theo Madatt

 KOUGA – In the heart of Kouga Municipality, where the hum of electricity and the pulse of mechanical infrastructure is at the forefront, a new chapter unfolds.

The appointment of Theo Madatt as the Director of Electro and Mechanical Services heralds not just a change in leadership, but a promise of innovation and progress in vital domains crucial to the municipality’s functioning – promising an exciting era of innovation and progress in vital domains of electricity provision, mechanical infrastructure maintenance, and fleet management.

As the spotlights shifts towards Madatt, the stage is set for a journey towards a brighter more sustainable future.

Into the limelight

With a rich background in electro and mechanical services, Madatt brings extensive expertise to his role. Having worked in specialised departments in Nelson Mandela Metro and honed his skills in diverse operational environments, he is well-prepared to navigate the challenges of ensuring continuous service delivery in Kouga.

Having previously acted as the Director of Infrastructure and Engineering, he gained invaluable experience in managing diverse operational portfolios, preparing him to lead the Electro and Mechanical Services department effectively.

Vision and strategy

Madatt’s vision is clear: to elevate service delivery to new heights amidst the formidable challenges of load shedding and environmental imperatives.

Central to his mission is the assurance of reliable electricity access for every household, coupled with the modernisation of infrastructure to meet future demands.

Plans are afoot to bolster the department through investments in essential infrastructure skills, upgraded facilities, and the integration of smart technologies for seamless operations.

The department’s inaugural solar plant project marks a significant milestone, with plans for further technological advancements and revenue-generating projects in the pipeline – to be implemented at an affordable scale over a period of one year.

He envisions a future where the department operates at world-class standards, contributing significantly to the municipality’s financial viability.

Navigating challenges, charting success

Yet, the road is not without hurdles.

Financial constraints, staff motivation, and infrastructure revitalisation loom large.

But Madatt remains undaunted, envisioning revenue-generating projects as means to address these challenges while demonstrating the department’s potential to enhance municipal revenue.

The approval of an EIA for a 20MW solar plant, which will be implemented at an affordable scale, stands testament to their commitment to environmental stewardship, while exploration into small-scale solar and hybrid renewable energy projects reflects dedication to energy-saving initiatives.

Personal life

Amidst his professional commitments, Madatt finds solace and joy in family life and community engagement.

Married with two sons, he enjoys activities such as studying, golfing, and fishing with his children, alongside contributing to community organisations.

A brighter tomorrow

As Madatt strides into his role, he brings with him not just a wealth of experience, but a burning passion to serve communities and elevate essential services.

Through his leadership, Kouga Municipality is poised to embrace innovation, sustainability, and progress like never before. As the sun sets on the old ways, a new dawn emerges, promising a brighter future for residents and stakeholders alike.

With Madatt at the helm, the stage is set for Kouga to shine brighter than ever before.