The basic services component provides an allocation for every poor household in a municipality to cover the cost of providing a package of free basic water
, sanitation, and energy and refuse removal.
So when the African National Congress (ANC) promised Free Basic Water to all after winning the country's first all-race election in 1994, the world took notice.
Undeterred, in July 2001, the Department of Water Affairs announced a Free Basic Water policy that promised every citizen 25 liters (6 gallons) of water per day.
The High Court also held that South Africa's free basic water
policy, which theoretically provides 25 liters of water per person per day for free, was inadequate to fulfill the constitutionally guaranteed right to water.
41) Under Kasrils' command, and in line with a campaign promise made during the municipal elections of December 2000, the government's Free Basic Water (FBW) policy was formalised in DWAF's Free Basic Water Implementation Strategy Document (Version 1) in May 2001.
In the words of the architect of Durban's Free Basic Water policy, Neil Macleod: 'During 1998, the new Council assessed the system in operation and it became apparent that the amount of money that was collected by the Council for the water supply was in fact equivalent to or less than the costs of administering the collection of the amounts from the relevant communities' (45).
The contradictions associated with the partial Free Basic Water commitment, along with poverty and popular resistance (and potential legal obligations to supply even poor customers), together mean that there have been no new South African water commercialisations since 2001.
Other chapters examine South Africa's housing and free basic water
Sewer treatment plants were also upgraded in Vryburg, Bloemhof, Schweitzer-Reneke, Christiana and free basic water
and management of water supply provision implemented in Naledi, Mausa and Lekwa Teemane Local Municipalities and provision of oxidation ponds in Amalia, Ganyesa,Bray and Tosca.
The judgment in the Mazibuko case already mentioned above in regard to prepayment metres is also relevant in this context because the second main issue raised in the case is the amount of water supplied as free basic water and because the Court has dealt with the minimum core approach in much detail.
They requested the Court to order the water services provider to supply a free basic water supply of 50 litres per person per day (Mazibuko judgment at Para.
The City of Johannesburg was ordered to provide 50 litres per person per day of free basic water.