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The official buyer’s guide of IMIESA magazine

MERCEDES-BENZ VITO Ada p t a b l e

R e li a b le

In n ova t i ve

“As infrastructure construction industry participants, we need to drive home the cognisance of doing things right the first time around.” Jan Kruger, technical manager at Fiberpipe

LOCAL GOVERNMENT SUPPLIER 2013 PUBLISHER Elizabeth Shorten EDITOR Richard Jansen van Vuuren HEAD OF DESIGN Frédérick Danton SENIOR DESIGNER Hayley Mendelow DESIGNER Kirsty Galloway CHIEF SUB-EDITOR Claire Nozaïc SUB-EDITOR Patience Gumbo CONTRIBUTORS Nicola Theunissen PRODUCTION MANAGER Antois-Leigh Botma PRODUCTION COORDINATOR Jacqueline Modise FINANCIAL MANAGER Andrew Lobban MARKETING AND ONLINE MANAGER Martin Hiller ADMINISTRATION Tonya Hebenton DISTRIBUTION MANAGER Nomsa Masina DISTRIBUTION COORDINATOR Asha Pursotham SUBSCRIPTIONS PRINTERS United Litho Johannesburg +27 (0)11 402 0571 ___________________________________________________ ADVERTISING SALES Jenny Miller Tel: +27 (0)11 467 6223 ___________________________________________________

Contents 2

Index to advertisers

Cover article Mercedes-Benz Vito: Ideal for EMS conversions

Infrastructure development & service delivery 11 United to find solutions 13 IMESA listing 15 Building sustainable communities

Civil engineering & construction Civil engineering sector in need of revival SABITA listing CMA listing

PUBLISHER: MEDIA No. 4, 5 Avenue, Rivonia 2056 PO Box 92026, Norwood 2117 Tel: +27 (0)11 233 2600 Fax: +27 (0)11 234 7274/5 E-mail:


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IMIESA ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTION: R530.00 (INCL VAT) ISSN 0257 1978 IMIESA, Inst.MUNIC. ENG. S. AFR. © Copyright 2013. All rights reserved. ___________________________________________________ IMESA CONTACTS IMESA Administration Officer: Ingrid Botton P O Box 2190, Westville, 3630 Tel: +27 (0)31 266 3263 Fax: +27 (0)31 266 5094 Email: Website: BORDER BRANCH Secretary: Melanie Matroos Tel: +27 (0)43 705 2401 Fax: +27 (0)43 743 5266 E-mail: EAST CAPE BRANCH Elsabé Koen Tel: +27 (0)41 505 8005 Fax: +27 (0)41 581 2300 E-mail: KWAZULU-NATAL BRANCH Secretary: Rita Zaayman Tel: +27(0)31 311 6382 NORTHERN PROVINCE BRANCH Secretary: Cornel Taljaard Tel: +27 (0)82 899 8341 Fax: +27 (0)11 675 1324 E-mail: SOUTHERN CAPE KAROO BRANCH Secretary: Henrietta Oliver Tel: +27(0)79 390 7536 Fax: 086 536 3725 E-mail:

Water, environment & solid waste Strategic positioning for local authorities Improving local authority outcomes Waste management best practice SAPPMA listing WISA listing IWMSA listing

Consulting engineering Providing innovative solutions Tackling local government challenges CESA listing

CPHA listing

Ad a p t a b l e


I n n ov a t i ve

“As infrastructure construction industry participants, we need to drive home the cognisance of doing things right the first time around.” Jan Kruger, technical manager at Fiberpipe

Cover Story Industry news Formal partnership agreement signed Technical reference guide available Expanding into Africa

FREE STATE AND NORTHERN CAPE BRANCH Secretary: Wilma Van Der Walt Tel: +27(0)83 457 4362 Fax: 086 628 0468 E-mail:

Be sure... be capsure

All material herein Local Government Supplier is copyright protected and may not be reproduced either in whole or in part without the prior written permission of the publisher. The views of contributors do not necessarily reflect those of the Institute of Municipal Engineering of Southern Africa or the publishers.

The official buyer’s guide of IMIESA magazine


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A work in progress


49 50 53

Plant & equipment

WESTERN CAPE BRANCH Secretary: Erica van Jaarsveld Tel: +27 (0)21 938 8455 Fax: +27 (0)21 938 8457 E-mail:

REST OF SOUTHERN AFRICA Representative: Andre Muller E-mail:

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Products and services Centralising compact plant business Construction equipment in its ‘natural habitat’ Green Star rated Sisonke District office

in th he


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The Mercedes-Benz Vito is an ideal base vehicle for conversion of ambulances for short- to mediumdistance transfers, mobile intensive care units and mobile clinics. The benefits of a mid-size vantype ambulance include crew comfort, sufficient storage capabilities and working space.

“As infrastructure construction industry participants, we need to drive home the cognisance of doing things right the first time around.” Jan Kruger, technical manager at Fiberpipe






SECTION Civil Engineering & Construction

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Water, Environment & Solid Waste



Water, Environment & Solid Waste

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Proper Consulting Engineers

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Rainbow Reservoirs

Water, Environment & Solid Waste

Rebel Safety Gear SAICE

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Structa Technology

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UWP Engineering

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Vermeer Equipment Suppliers

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Water Institute of Southern Africa


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Aveng Manufacturing Infraset

19 51 Divisional IFC Divisional OFC & 49 Divisional IFC IFC

Water, Environment & Solid Waste



The official buyer’s guide of IMIESA magazine

0(5&('(6%(1=9,72 Ad ap t ab l e

Re l i a b le

I nnov a t i ve

“As infrastructure construction industry participants, we need to drive home the cognisance of doing things right the first time around.” Jan Kruger, technical manager at Fiberpipe

IMIESA is the official magazine of the Institute of Municipal Engineering of Southern Africa and focuses on national, regional and local infrastructural development and service delivery linked to public private partnerships. Published monthly

Inside Mining takes a look at the heart of mining in Africa, with industry experts who add a unique voice to the publication, making it the most sought after source of information in the mining industry. Published monthly

Water & Sanitation Africa is the official magazine of the Water Institute of SA and is circulated to a carefully-targeted audience of decision makers, focusing on latest developments, news and products in the water industry. Published alternate monthly

Transport World Africa provides the corporate market and transporters with the critical information that they need to move their goods efficiently, safely and quickly, using all modes of transport. Published alternate monthly

RéSource promotes integrated waste and resource management towards cleaner production and a greener environment. It is the official magazine of the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa. Published quarterly

Local Government Supplier, the annual yearbook to IMIESA magazine, provides the ideal platform for communication between industry organisations and local and provincial government. Published annually

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Ideal for EMS The Mercedes-Benz Vito is an ideal base vehicle for conversion of ambulances for shor t- to mediumdistance transfers, mobile intensive care units and mobile clinics.




conversions T

HE BENEFITS OF a mid-size van-type ambulance include an ergonomically designed interior with a generously proportioned cockpit and comfortable seats, which offer a pleasant environment for the crew and patient comfort as well as sufficient storage and working space. Nicolette Lambrechts, brand manager for Mercedes-Benz Vans, says: “With its generous working area, high roof with rear wing doors and a low, ergonomic loading height for the stretcher, the Vito panel van offers unmatched versatility to the emergency services industry.” Lambrechts adds that Mercedes-Benz panel vans are versatile and can be converted into any emergency medical services (EMS) conversion requirement or solution. “We work with recommended bodybuilders that adhere to strict Mercedes-Benz bodybuilder directives. We also interface closely with the customer to understand their application requirements,” Lambrechts continues. The prototype is then built and approved with the bodybuilder to ensure that it meets customer

satisfaction and legal regulatory standards from National Regulator for Compulsory Standards. The Vito’s intelligent driver assistance and safety systems are best in class and include Adaptive ESP which maintains vehicle stability and superior handling in emergency situations. When it comes to interior design, the Vito is tough to beat. Its practical equipment and appointments, along with a wealth of intelligent system solutions, offer flexible usage options and allow a high degree of individualisation and specialisation for an emergency vehicle conversion. Mpumelelo Zulu, Mercedes-Benz Vans product manager, says: “Safety is essential for emergency services and it is one of the factors that have helped to make the Vito so popular. Our engineers have paid particularly close attention to the aspects of the vehicle that affect the customer’s bottom line: reliability, long-service life and engines that combine fuel economy with ample power reserves.” Zulu elaborates that in the emergency services sector, quick response time, vehicle reliability and safety are of crucial importance. “Emergency service personnel

require a vehicle that is capable of responding to the demands and challenges they face when attending to cases. We firmly believe that the Mercedes-Benz Vito is up to the task. Additional benefits of using a Vito as EMS conversion are use of Code 8/B Licence for drivers, long service intervals of up to 30 000 km as well as an extensive Mercedes-Benz Dealer footprint nationwide. “We also offer driver training and CharterWay service and maintenance contracts in order for the customer to maximise the benefits that the Mercedes-Benz Vito offers. To ensure maximum uptime, we have a customer response centre and we are monitor all cases at head office level,” Lambrechts concludes.

Its practical equipment and appointments offer flexible usage options and allow a high degree of individualisation

t +27 (0)12 677 5936 •

Mercedes-Benz Vito specs • 113 CDI (100 kW/310 0 Nm) or 116 CDI (120 kW/360 0 Nm) • two wide sliding doorss (985 mm wide x 1 259 mm high) h) • through-loading width of 1 277 mm between the he wheel arches • load compartment height ght 1.35 m, or 1.76 m in highroof models • flat load compartmentt floor with load-securing rings gs • side-wall panelling in painted hardboard and continuous interior or panelling up to roof height available as an option.

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Looking after It’s safe to say that South Africa’s water infrastructure is in the same position that the energy sector was in a decade ago. Without huge investment to rehabilitate and replace ageing infrastructure, supply and quality are under threat.

S Ensuring the bedding is scraped evenly before pipe laying

OUTH AFRICA’S water infrastructure deficit amounts to R573 billion over the next 10 years, or R58 billion/ year, according to the Minister of Water Affairs, Edna Molewa. Fred van Zyl, the department’s director of water services, says that 44 to 50% of these funds are available. The R573 billion excludes funds for agriculture, sanitation, operations and maintenance. Taken together, the country may need as much as R670 billion.

Van Zyl is realistic about the constraints: “We can’t just throw money at infrastructure without being able to manage it. We need to invest in asset management and institutional capacity.” Jan Kruger, technical manager at Fiberpipe, explains that this statement rings a particular alarm bell in regards to pipe infrastructure. “Pipeline design has traditionally been based on a 50-year life cycle, which means that the extensive infrastructure pipelines facilities installed in the 1970s are now nearing the end

Jannie Liebenberg explains to the contractor and client how to correctly lay GRP Pipes




tomorrow today of their life cycle and will need immediate refurbishment and, in most cases, replacement. “In the past, Fiberpipe would supply glass fibre reinforced plastic (GRP) products to a contract site and train the contractor on installation requirements, while supervision would fall into the mandate of the client,” explains Kruger. While this system was initially the norm, in recent years Fiberpipe decided it would be in the client’s best interest as well as their own to ensure that a Fiberpipe Field Services representative is present on all projects that the company is supplying its product to. This, the company believes, will ensure that the relatively ‘new’ material of GRP pipes will become more familiar to contractors and clients as the ‘traditional’ pipe material that most are confident in installing is steel. “As infrastructure construction industry participants, we need to drive home the cognisance of doing things right the first time around,” says Kruger. “Although pipelines are generally designed for a lifespan of 50 years, there is no guarantee of this if they are incorrectly installed and maintained,” he continues. This statement is not exclusive to GRP products, capital spent properly at the beginning of a life cycle will save significant amounts for remedial work in the long run. Fiberpipe is the sole manufacturer of Flowtite and Vectus GRP pipes and fittings in sub-Saharan Africa. It manufactures pipe and fittings locally for the use in potable, raw, sea, industrial, waste, sewer and bulk water applications. Fiberpipe’s mission is to be the leading manufacturer and supplier of GRP pipes and fittings to users, owners, installers, traders and utility managers in civil engineering, mining, industrial and agricultural market segments located in sub-Saharan Africa as well as the

• sea and desalinated water • power plants • chemical and industrial wastes • sewer and irrigation. The Vectus pipe system is manufactured from glass fibre reinforced polyester and vinylester. The production method is a discontinuous double helix reciprocal filament winding process that gives the pipes a balanced combination of axial and hoop mechanical properties. The Vectus pipe systems are free of corrosion, lightweight and a “Although pipelines are well-documented product with good generally designed for a references worldwide. In addition to lifespan of 50 years, there the civil and industrial markets, the is no guarantee of this if pipe systems are also used in the oil they are incorrectly installed and gas, shipbuilding and offshore industries. Within the industrial marand maintained.” Jan Kruger, ket, the pipe system is used widely technical manager, Fiberpipe as a cost-effective solution due to biaxial pipe systems with well-locked joint soluglass-fibre reinforced polyester. The productions for pipe and fittings. These locked joint tion method is a continuous filament winding systems are also successfully used in municiprocess. The GRP systems are a cost-effective pal water, cooling water and pressure sewerage piping solution. The pipes are corrosion free systems in combination with Flowtite pipes to and have a proven resistance to acidic enviavoid thrust blocks. ronment in water and sewage systems. They are lightweight and therefore easy to handle. Flowtite pipes and fittings are suited to several applications such as: • potable water transfer • fire fighting t +27 (0)11 065 2300 • Indian Ocean Islands. The company believes its goals will be achieved through intensive focus on quality products, excellence in customer service and manufacturing efficiency. Fiberpipe’s vision is to be the preferred supplier of piping solutions in sub-Saharan Africa through its GRP product range. Flowtite is Fiberpipe’s leading product for water, sewage and industrial applications. The Flowtite pipe system is manufactured from

RIGHT Overseeing the contractor cutting GRP pipes after training him on the proper method




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Structa Technology’s Prestanks are hygienically safe, cost effective and a reliable way to store water for commercial sectors, private sectors and even for personalized storage. Choose from temporary or permanent erection at mines, powerstations, building sites, hospitals, water affairs,municipalities, rural communities and agriculture. There is a wealth of water storage applications, for which Prestanks are an answer.

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Building sustainable communities Africa needs to improve its infrastructure to achieve socioeconomic growth. Capacity, exper tise and the right par tners are crucial to making this happen. So is deliver y – on time, on brief and within budget.


IGEN AFRICA’S five-year strategy – titled “S-Vision 2016” – emphasises the fact that it is an infrastru cture development firm that provides ser vices in engineering, project deliver y, management consulting, development financing and advisor y ser vices. The company regards infrastructure development to be, primarily, about the sustainable benefits of the socially desirable developmental outcomes that emanate from the use of this infrastructure. These include access to ser vices, reduction of poverty, capacity building, empowerment and creation of employment opportunities. Its strategy is clearly The Minister of Human Settlements, Tokyo Sexwale, at the official opening of the Klarinet Integrated Housing Development. Bigen Africa is the project manager and engineers on this project, which won the 2013 Govan Mbeki Housing Award LOCAL GOVERNMENT SUPPLIER 2013



focused on contributing to countries’ strategies – addressing the resource, political, economic, social, environmental and technological issues most likely to significantly impact on the lives of people over the short and medium to long term. In par ticular, Bigen Africa recognises the need to participate in assisting countries to address their key emerging public policy priorities, which include integrated human settlements, rural development, renewable energy, road and rail freight

Thorntree View is an ambitious human settlement project in Tshwane that seamlessly blends business, social and familial resources in an estate that goes beyond the ordinary. Leading infrastructure development firm, Bigen Africa, is the appointed civil engineering company of this project which is an embodiment of the Breaking New Ground principles at work. Its design stimulates wealth creation, poverty alleviation and equity by seamlessly blending 29 000 subsidised, institutional and bonded housing units with public open spaces, business and commercial stands, schools, sports fields and parks. In line with Bigen Africa’s business practice, the Thorntree View project was used to create employment opportunities, provide on-the-job training, support local suppliers and SMME’s and create a vibrant economic activity for women selling food to contractors.

transport, and the operation and maintenance of existing infrastructure. To this end, it has identified these as priority areas for its participation and contribution. The company is expanding its asset management, roads and transport, mining and energy sector focus, while continuing to excel in water and sanitation, human settlement, structures and the development financing sectors.



Integrated land development central to its approach Proper land development provides the foundation for urban and rural communities to interact in a safe and functional environment. Land development and municipal infrastructure form the backbone of the physical element of the integrated approach, which often leaves a lasting legacy for many decades in a community. Bigen Africa understands and appreciates that the right infrastructure solution, first time ever y time, is of critical importance to its clients and, ultimately, the beneficiaries of land development. The provision of land development infrastructure goes beyond the basic notion of ser vice deliver y. Properly planned and harnessed, it forms the cornerstone for accelerated growth, economic sustainability and social stability within communities. The company firmly believes that municipal infrastructure is one of the key drivers of modern civilisation. Its land development infrastructure ser vice offering is focused on both urban and rural development, which in turn comprises and integrates residential, commercial, industrial, social and agricultural land use. Physical infrastructure requirements span disciplines that include roads and stormwater, water and sanitation, electrical reticulation and waste management. Bigen Africa also supports the global commitment towards green buildings, green infrastructure and green towns to promote the long-term sustainability of our communities. Right résumé for the job The comprehensive Bigen Africa ser vice offering is managed by professionals with in-depth technical exper tise, decades of relevant experience and a passion for providing creative and innovative solutions for land development infrastructure challenges encountered in the urban and rural development sectors. Its ser vices are proudly offered by a highly motivated team of more than 500 educated, trained and experienced staff members, led by senior professionals. In-depth technical knowledge and management skills come from decades of relevant experience, know-how and a passion for creative and innovative solutions for the land development infrastructure challenges encountered in the urban and rural development sectors. The company’s track record includes some of the largest integrated urban housing developments undertaken in Southern Africa to

FOCUSED ON SERVICE DELIVERY WITH DISTINCTION The Bigen Africa land development infrastructure service offering includes: • development management, including project structuring and financial feasibility project management • feasibility studies and engineering investigations • planning, engineering design and tender documentation • procurement advisory services • municipal and/or provincial submission and approvals contract management, construction supervision and monitoring • project commissioning and close-out • design and construct turnkey solutions.

FLAGSHIP PROJECTS Our list of project deliveries speaks for itself: • Olievenhoutbosch (Tshwane) • Klarinet (eMalahleni) • Spring Valley (eMalahleni) • Nelmapius (Tshwane) • Lufhereng (Johannesburg) • Chief Mogale (Mogale City) • Peleng (Botswana) • Moretele Rural Water Supply • Fleurhof (Johannesburg) • Madibeng Rural Water Supply • North West Rural Water Supply • Mmakau Formalisation (Madibeng) • Modderspruit Formalisation (Madibeng) • Lehae (Johannesburg) • Steyn City (Johannesburg) • Scottsdene (Cape Town) • Various Rural Housing projects in KwaZulu-Natal • Thorntree View (Tshwane).

date, providing ser vices and homes to more than 200 000 families. Similarly, it has provided a formidable range of mega rural water, sanitation, roads, housing and agricultural projects ser ving more than 1 000 000 people in various communities.

ABOUT BIGEN AFRICA Bigen Africa has a network of 14 offices across South Africa and offices in Zambia, Ghana, Namibia and Botswana. The group’s remarkable growth since its establishment in 1971 is indicative of its smarter business approach – interlocking world-class, bestpractice development finance, engineering and management consulting expertise to customise innovative, value-driven solutions for clients in the public and private sectors alike.

t + 27 (0)12 842 8700 •


United to find solutions The lack of ser vice deliver y in the public sector frequently leads to heated debates. Industr y professionals, consultants and local authorities can point out the hiccups and challenges, but are often far less instrumental in finding solutions.


CCORDING TO Johan Leibbrandt, local government specialist adviser at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the company’s research reports in the past have always sought to strike an optimistic tone, but this has become more challenging in the past few years, as municipalities face multiple challenges, which have only been intensified by the global financial crisis. Blame shifting will not solve the myriad challenges that local authorities face on a daily basis. Several consulting fraternities, including the likes of PwC, KPMG and Deloitte, are vocal in not only pointing out the failures, but also in finding the solutions that will lead to effective service delivery and infrastructure management in South Africa. This article reflects on the opinions and viewpoints of these consulting houses, focusing on the solutions that will enable better infrastructure management in South Africa, specifically at local authority level.

Private sector partnering with government in implementation of the NDP According to the vision of government’s ambitious National Development Plan (NDP), by 2030 urban areas will have better access to transport, jobs will be created in rural areas and, overall, there will be better service delivery in water, energy, ICT and public transport. The Diagnostic Report – as issued by the National Planning Commission in July 2011

– clearly articulated that although the country has achieved significant gains since 1994 through broadening access to services for many citizens, as a country we are still confronted with several challenges in our goal to eliminate poverty and reduce inequality. According to Tshidi Mokgabudi, chairman for KPMG advisory and lead partner for KPMG’s engagement with the NDP, one such challenge is the variation in the ability of different municipalities to deliver services effectively. The Diagnostic Report referenced a report by the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs that concluded that “much of local government” was “in distress”, noting that urban municipalities tend to perform better than those in rural areas and especially those located in the former homelands. “Building on the key challenges highlighted by the Diagnostic Report, the NDP seeks to create and sustain a capable and developmental state through aiming to not only strengthen local government, but to also make it a career of choice,” says Mokgabudi. “At KPMG, we firmly believe that the NDP is not just government’s plan; it is a plan for all South Africans. As citizens of this country, we need to – individually and collectively – focus our energies towards creating employment, eliminating poverty and reducing unemployment. One key stakeholder towards this objective is the private sector, which has a critical partnering role to play towards implementing the 119 critical actions

as highlighted in the NDP,” states Mokgabudi. “Essentially, business has a role to play in uniting South Africans under a common programme of the NDP.” Equally important is that business has a role in ensuring that it is focused on growth and creating jobs, Mokgabudi points out. “At the end of the day, GDP growth (and the resultant job creation, as well as tax revenue to fund government initiatives) is dependent mainly on four components: the consumer, investment (by private sector businesses), government expenditure and exports. Government has a critical role to play in creating an enabling environment for business. Business, in turn, should respond to that by understanding that over and above supporting government in its NDP initiatives, it has a critical role to play in driving increasing investment, growing local manufacturing capacity, increasing exports, reducing the country’s dependence on imports and creating jobs.” The Diagnostic Report identified a failure to implement policies and an absence of broad partnerships as the main reasons for slow progress. “While there is consensus that we have good policies as a country, implementation remains our area of greatest opportunity for improvement. This is fuelled by significant capacity and skills deficits, with severe shortage of staff and specialised skills within local government, especially in infrastructure




planning, engineering and project management,” says Mokgabudi.

Local governments need to formulate business and service delivery models The notion that local municipalities should start to view their operations as self-sustaining businesses, with the similar principles applicable to the private sector, is not far-fetched. According to Armand de Vries, principal consultant in Management Consulting at KPMG terms such as ‘business models’ and ‘service delivery models’ are usually associated with the private sector. A typical business model considers customer segments, value proposition, customer relationship, channels and key activities. Understanding the nature and constraints of these aspects will not only put an organisa-

customers, based on an understanding of their needs. According to De Vries, the first part of the question is relatively easy to answer; however, the second part – truly understanding and delivering on customers’ needs – is a critical failure of many municipalities. When building the business and service delivery model, De Vries emphasises that activities should be altered according to the customers segments. “For example, the service offered to someone with limited education would be different to that of a senior executive. The former may need dedicated resources to assist with the task at hand, whether it is the completion of an application form or the answering of questions, whereas for the latter an internet platform would be sufficient.” De Vries emphasises that business and service delivery models should be as important to

“Business has a role to play in uniting South Africans under a common programme of the NDP” the public sector as it is to the private sector. “Applying such principles will result in the delivery of faster more effective services at local government level,” De Vries concludes.

tion’s purpose in perspective, but also provides answers to critical questions around business activities. Does the business focus on the value proposition or does most of its time and energy go into managing resources, business partners and activities that are not related to the value proposition? It is crucial for municipalities to follow such principles. “Once a business model has been formulated and a common understanding has been achieved, the next step is to focus on the activities that drive the value proposition. Each of the activities needs to be analysed in terms of which service or product is offered to which customer segment, through which channel. Equally important are the business partners and resources required to execute these activities. All of these elements provide the building blocks for an organisation’s service delivery model,” says De Vries. Similar to when applying these principles to the private sector, municipalities need to ask what type of service is being delivered to



Transparent leadership vital for local authority success A further element vital for service delivery success is that of transparent leadership. According to Corne Oberholzer, Deloitte’s director in consulting and industry leader for local government, leadership (or a lack thereof) is critical to performance at local authority level, and thus to the improvement of service delivery. Oberholzer notes that a discussion about ways to improve local government finances, and therefore service delivery, will be incomplete without a focus on the role of leadership. Many factors require a clean audit and sustain good performance at local government level – factors that range from sound financial management, continually improving skills depth, governance and oversight, performance management as well as regulatory compliance. A recent PwC report focusing on the challenges facing today’s cities and local governments, titled Making it happen: A roadmap for South African municipalities to achieve desired outcomes, also emphasises the importance of leadership.

According to Jan Gey van Pittius, a director at PwC and local government subject matter expert, inspirational leadership is critical if cities are to implement their strategies and deliver the outcomes their stakeholders deserve. He highlights, however, that leadership is not enough and that governments fail to build the capabilities they need to overcome the challenge of execution in several key areas, such as adequate financing, implementation planning and comprehensive performance and risk management. However, if all these elements are in place, and the municipality still lacks the leadership to drive them, it is futile, believes Oberholzer. “In the case of a municipality, the executive mayor, the council, municipal manager and senior officials must take ownership and accountability for achieving a clean audit and lead by example. The first and most important task of the municipality’s leadership is to achieve alignment between political and administrative leadership – too often municipal governance, effectiveness and sustainability break down due to tensions, lack of alignment or poor role clarification between politicians and officials,” states Oberholzer. Once the municipality’s leadership established alignments, it is important to put further internal controls in place that will monitor income and expenditure flows, says Oberholzer. “This includes putting in place a strong internal audit function and an audit committee.” The performance must be continually reviewed against concerns raised by the auditor-general. Oberholzer reiterates that there are complex reasons for poor audit outcomes, which extend beyond poor financial management. The task of financial audits can therefore not only be left to the chief financial officer and other senior financial managers. “Collective ownership is non-negotiable.”The relationship between the audit committee, the internal audit function and leadership requires direction, so that it becomes a trusted business advisory relationship. According to Oberholzer, the Municipal Systems Act (MSA) and Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) provide important guidance on the operation of the governance framework, and municipalities do not need to shoot in the dark, without any guidance.

Lack of capacity, skills and accountability Due to acts such as the MSA and MFMA, Oberholzer holds the view that it is not an absence of legislation that gives rise to the


lack of implementation, but rather the lack of leadership’s capacity, skills and accountability. Municipality leadership can influence and guide the development of credible action plans to address the internal control deficiencies of audit findings and establish key control processes. “Municipal managers must also monitor the action plans and key control processes on a regular basis and hold individuals accountable when the action plan targets are not achieved.” The oversight function for municipalities at provincial level should be functioning effectively and engagement between officials at provincial and local level should be clearly outlined and formalised. It is widely known that municipalities face complex and massive human resource challenges. “The first, and probably the biggest, failure by too many municipalities is the practice of appointing people who do not have the right skills, competencies or experience to perform the job. Once appointed, too few municipalities then have an effective performance management framework and system, which is also a leadership failure,” says Oberholzer. Generally, there is poor management of vacancies and acting positions, and local

governments battle to attract, retain and develop qualified competent people across all areas. High vacancy levels and key positions being vacant for long periods across the municipality invariably result in poor performance. “The management of vacancies and acting positions requires management to examine a number of underlying factors. These include the municipality’s attraction and retention policies, including offering market related or competitive packages and other incentives, as well as providing an environment that is conducive to job satisfaction for professionals,” states Oberholzer. Although poor HR management and recruitment procedures lead to poor implementation, a further element compounding this challenge that there is a disconnection between strategy and implementation. The PwC study covers local, district and metropolitan municipalities across all of South Africa’s nine provinces. The findings in the report are based on 36 surveys. Gey van Pittius says it is encouraging to note that all respondents have a strategic vision. “However, it is concerning to note that only just over half (56%) of respondents said that this

vision is being implemented, having an impact and being regularly kept up to date. “A vision on its own is not enough. It needs to set the overall scene and direction for growth and development for the municipality. The shorter-term strategies (Integrated Development Plan and Spatial Development Framework) should take the vision (Growth and Development Strategy) as a blueprint and their formulation should be done with the involvement of key internal and external stakeholders.” The study also indicated that 42% of municipalities reported that their organisations’ strategy was ‘completely integrated with the strategic vision’. For 39%, the level of integration is not complete as there are gaps and a lack of full integration. “In our view, municipal managers need a clear and deliverable strategy setting out the focus for the organisation, what is driving it and what it does best and why. The ability to respond to a constantly changing environment through sensitivity to market forces and having visibility of the future impact, and a clear mandate for change that is driven through the organisation,” says Gey van Pittius. Sources: KMPG, Deloitte, PwC


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Civil engineering sector needs local level revival It is safe to say that the civil engineering and construction sector has been on a rocky road since 2010. There have been various challenges and although government and the private sector have made significant inroads in addressing them, these issues – not new to many – will remain at the top of agendas for the next few years.


HE CEO OF the South African Institution of Civil Engineering (SAICE), Manglin Pillay, provided Local Government Supplier with some insight on the challenges that the industry faces – and the role that industry associations such as SAICE has played to address these challenges.

Not all doom and gloom Despite many challenges, the industry witnessed several highlights in the past year, which stands the civil engineering fraternity in good stead for the future. “The adoption of the National Development Plan (NDP) as the ‘map for South Africa’ at the ANC’s 53rd elective conference in Mangaung

was one such highlight. The appointment of Cyril Ramaphosa as the ANC deputy president also bodes well for the NDP as he is the deputy chairperson of the National Planning Commission,” states Pillay. SAICE has made substantial input towards the finalisation of the NDP, which is essentially about service delivery – the core function of




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outcome clearly indicated a dire need for intervention. Pillay emphasises SAICE is more than willing to provide support in this regard. The challenges are multi-layered and manifold. “The provision of civil infrastructure is the surest way to improve the social and economic wealth of a nation. Most Millennium Development Goals are based on the ability and availability of the civil engineering sector,” says Pillay.

local authorities in the country, says Pillay. Other highlights included candid reports by the public protector, advocate Thuli Madonsela,

on various contentious construction issues. Auditor-general Terence Nombembe presented his audits on local government and the

The capacity crisis – numbers speak volumes All social services – water and sanitation provision, waste management, transport, education, hospitals and clinics – rely on infrastructure provision and, first and foremost, the performance of local governments. Unfortunately, local governments cannot spend the budgets they have for these projects, largely due to the lack of civil engineering and other professionals employed at local level, Pillay emphasises. “Technical decision-making processes have been substantially paralysed as the engineering LOCAL GOVERNMENT SUPPLIER 2013



professional has been relegated to subservience in non-strategic positions. Indications are that engineering decisions are subject to inadequately informed political governance structures. Disillusioned individual engineering professionals are therefore still leaving local authorities, resulting in the current approximately 2 000 vacancies for civil engineering professionals in local authorities,” says Pillay.

SAICE provides some statistics to put this challenge further into perspective. In 2007, the number of civil engineering staff in local government was estimated to be between 1 300 and 1 400. This indicates a net loss of 70 to 90 engineering staff per year since the late eighties. These civil engineering professionals need to serve a population of 50 million or more.

A ‘Marshall Plan’ Part of Dr Allyson Lawless’s research suggestions refers to the development of a ‘Marshall Plan’ to rebuild adequate numbers of artisans, operators, civil and electrical engineers, town and regional planners, property valuators, building inspectors and laboratory technicians – to name a few of the key skills. This will require: • municipalities to step up technical appointments and attract as many back into the sector as possible • the public sector to offer and coordinate support and set conditions towards sustainability • deployment of students and graduates on long-term workplace training contracts • harnessing professional bodies to mobilise available or retired skills and to advise on professional training • consultants to second experienced municipal staff to run departments and rebuild internal capacity • in some instances, an ‘adopt-a-town’ strategy whereby the private sector is appointed on a turnkey basis to address backlogs, refurbish and rebuild long-term structures, systems and capacity per municipality.


Ideally, engineering teams should reflect the accepted international municipal and utility ratio of six engineering professionals per 100 000 inhabitants. In South Africa’s best case scenarios (in the larger cities and towns), municipalities have access to three engineering professionals for ever y 100 000 inhabitants. “This is not nearly enough to address our country’s service delivery needs, including water, sanitation and waste management. The load on those remaining is excessive. If allowed to continue, service delivery will all but come to a standstill,” says Pillay. The research publication Numbers & Needs in local government: Addressing civil engineering – the critical profession for service delivery by Dr Allyson Lawless, the first woman president of SAICE in 2000 and director of SAICE Professional Development and Projects, unpacks in detail the severe capacity conundrum local authorities face. The report reviews the lack of professional engineers at municipal level and the migration of skills towards the private sector and into


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global markets. It then goes on to focus on solutions for municipalities, encouraging players to develop a uniquely South African model for local government.

Ageing infrastructure Dr Mar tin van Veelen, the 2012 SAICE president and the first president of the Federation of African Engineering Organisations, highlighted that South Africa’s accumulated wisdom is vested in an ageing engineering corps and the challenge is to transfer this wisdom to young upcoming engineers. Directly related to lack of capacity and ageing civil engineering professionals is the equally rapidly deteriorating civil infrastructure. “The biggest employer, directly and indirectly, of engineering services in South Africa remains national, provincial and local government – the sector where most money is spent on service delivery in the form of the provision, operation and management of infrastructure. It is therefore in this sector where experienced and

knowledgeable professionals are required to plan the development of infrastructure and to oversee the sustainable management of the country’s valuable infrastructure assets.” In March this year, the South African Plastic Pipe Manufacturers’ Association (SAPPMA) highlighted an important challenge in the management of South Africa’s infrastructure

function. Unfortunately, he points out, the country’s infrastructure is under pressure and threatens to collapse if municipalities do not start to follow best practice examples of asbestos cement (AC) pipe replacements. “The majority of the old pipes were installed in the early 1960s and have undoubtedly reached the end of their effective life span. Unless urgent attention is given to the replacement and maintenance of the water infrastructure, the end result is predictable: bursts will start occurring on a daily basis, followed by catastrophic component failure, and regular and prolonged disruptions in service delivery.” In the statement, Venter concluded that local governments need to pay attention to the early warning signs and enrol pipe-replacement projects. Moreover, SAPPMA urged local governments to invest in the necessary technical skills to execute such projects as the projects cannot come into fruition without local engineering capacity driving them. 

“The biggest employer, directly and indirectly, of engineering services in South Africa remains national, provincial and local government” assets: ageing pipe infrastructure. The organisation alerted the industry to the fact that the replacement of old water pipes around the country is long overdue. SAPPMA’s chairman, Jan Venter, warned that existing steel and asbestos cement pipe infrastructure in South Africa has corroded significantly during the past 50 years. Water distribution, waste disposal, irrigation and telecommunications all rely on pipelines to



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Addressing capacity at local level To address the capacity issue at local level, SAICE has started offering a variety of courses for engineering professionals from all tiers of government and the private sector, for continuing professional development. SAICE’s Candidate Academy enables young engineering graduates to turn their theoretical education into the practical skills demanded by modern society and the economy. The initiative is a joint venture of SAICE and Consulting Engineers South Africa (CESA) (see page 50) to facilitate and prepare the individual towards professional registration with the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) within a reasonable time frame. To be able to register with ECSA, the graduate has to go through the full project cycle that covers all the technical activities involved in civil engineering projects from construction through to operations and maintenance. In the past, SAICE also ran a Local Authority Councillor Programme, which was presented over two days. In an interactive presentation the councillors were empowered to understand what infrastructure entailed, the importance of maintenance and the appropriate operation of water and sewerage works and roads, etc. The pilot projects in Mogale City and in Midrand were so successful that the team was



invited again so that more councillors could benefit from it. According to Pillay, SAICE is in the process of revising the Local Authority Councillor Programme. “SAICE is engaging with all three tiers of government to offer support for initiatives that would address the challenges facing the departments where technically skilled people are in short supply in order to effect appropriate service delivery in South Africa,” he states. The South African Federation of Civil Engineering Contractors (SAFCEC), the employer’s organisation for the civil engineering industry registered under the Labour Relations Act (66 of 1995), facilitates various national education, training and development initiatives through its National Training Committee. SAFCEC supports the Quality Council for Trades & Occupation’s role as potential development and assessment quality partner for the industry and has recently embarked on an inclusive process that consults members, a community of experts and organised labour in the development of three artisan career paths. These career paths include roadworks, structures, and drainage and services. In addition, SAFCEC supports government and industry stakeholders in their efforts to build capacity in South Africa in the interest of all its members. SAFCEC’s Diamond Academy

aims to produce the next generation of industry leaders through training and mentorship of emerging member enterprises.

The year ahead – starting a “civilution” In support of the NDP, SAICE – with its 110year history and its contribution towards the development of South Africa – has initiated the “Era of Civilution”. Pillay states that South Africa has embarked on a new struggle: a revolution that relates to infrastructure and industrialisation, with goals that are to be met before 2030. In support of this civil engineering revolution, the Civilution Congress 2014 will be held from 6 to 8 April 2014 at Emperors Palace, Gauteng. At the Civilution Congress, engineers will seek ways in which to approach the engineering and infrastructure challenges facing South Africa in a different manner. Many of the issues facing civil engineers are contentious and, moving forward, there will be divergent views and disparate aspirations, notes SAICE. According to Pillay: “It is time for engineers and engineering to redeem their esteem, prestige and respect, and to take back what rightly belongs to us: excellence, ethical business practice, sustainability and making a difference.”


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Strategically positioned to serve the East Rand’s local authorities Africa needs to improve its infrastructure to achieve socio-economic growth. Capacity, exper tise and the right par tners are crucial to making this happen. So is deliver y – on time, on brief and within budget.


HE EAST RAND Water Care Company (ERWAT) is a Section 21 (non-profit) company that serves three local authorities, of which the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality (EMM) is the main stakeholder. The company was registered after a strategic decision to regionalise the function of wastewater treatment, main outfall sewers and reuse systems. It provides bulk wastewater conveyance and a highly technical and proficient wastewater treatment service to more than 3.5 million people and more than 2 000 industries.

including Hartbeestfontein, Olifantsfontein and Waterval. A new regional plant, Welgedacht, was completed near Springs in 2003, with a treatment capacity of 35 Mℓ/d. Increasing demand in the Springs area has led to a further expansion of the Welgedacht plant from 35 Mℓ/d to 50 Mℓ/d, notes Wilken.

Over the past 20 years, these regional expansions successfully led to additional water capacity of 153 Mℓ/d – a significant contribution to extending water capacity at local level. According to Twala, the financing of extensions and construction of new plants remains one of ERWAT’s biggest challenges. “The success of future projects, as with those of the

Additional water capacity through facilities development plan “At the time of its establishment, ERWAT designed a facilities development plan (FDP) to assess growth in the area and plan for additional capacity where needed. The company’s strategic focus is to provide the right-sized works in the best geographic location, at the lowest cost, incorporating the most appropriate available technology,” says Twala. ERWAT regularly reviews the current FDP 2025 model – taking into account and remaining on par with the strategic direction of its parent municipality, the EMM. The FDP now also forms part of the service delivery agreement between ERWAT and the EMM. A few years earlier, ERWAT’s regionalisation approach and strategic focus on the optimisation of capacity led to the closure of smaller wastewater treatment plants. The company also built new plants while expanding existing footprints. According to Koos Wilken, executive manager of development at ERWAT, three regional treatment plants were refurbished and extended,



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past, will continue to depend on the availability of funding. The company’s parent municipality, EMM, will continue to play a crucial role in securing future funding,” he informs.

Current footprint – 19 wastewater works, 700 Mℓ/d ERWAT has successfully divided its region of operation into three main drainage districts, namely DD3 (the upper regions of the Crocodile River), DD5 (Blesbokspruit) and DD6 (Rietspruit). Currently, ERWAT manages 19 wastewater care works, treating a combined capacity of some 700 Mℓ/d. The designed capacity of the individual works, based on the average dry weather flow rate, varies from 0.4 Mℓ/d to as high as 155 Mℓ/d. Final effluent quality strictly conforms to the standards set by the Department of Water Affairs (DWA). In line with this, ERWAT is exceptionally proud of the consolidation of smaller, individual laboratories at wastewater treatment plants into one centralised laboratory. ERWAT Laboratory Services is ISO/IEC 17025 accredited by the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS), recognised by government as the sole accreditation body in South Africa. The ERWAT laboratory recently extended its services to include the identification of waterborne pathogens (PCR analysis), GC-MS analysis, as well as automated photometric low-range specialised chemical analysis on potable water and boreholes. The laboratory also established an industrial section to render industrial effluent services to all spheres of government and the private sector. In addition to the above, the laboratory continues standard chemical and microbiological laboratory testing services for the analysis of water, wastewater, activated sludge, sewage sludge and soil.

“At the moment we are negotiating with universities to continue this initiative,” states Twala.

Discharge quality improvement and ongoing R&D In late 2008, the DWA launched the Green Drop certification programme for wastewater care works to ensure that they progressively improve their operations and reduce the environmental impact of discharge into water bodies. The system aims at awarding water service authorities with Blue and/or Green Drop status if they comply with drinking water and wastewater legislation and other best practices required by the DWA. ERWAT fully supports this initiative and has developed a Green Drop Acceleration Plan to streamline the processes towards the achievements of the company’s strategic objectives. In this planning document, a list of projects is coupled with the budget that is needed to optimise, refurbish and upgrade the relevant wastewater treatment plants in order to achieve Green Drop status. The company also continues to contribute to the water industry through an ongoing focus on research and development. A 10-year agreement with the University of Pretoria to support a chair in wastewater management has been successfully in place. Through this agreement, numerous postgraduate and doctorate students were able to continue their studies in the wastewater field and make valuable contributions through their relevant research projects.

Vision for the future – remaining committed to quality ERWAT strives to meet the ever-growing demand for improved quality in the industry while maximising available infrastructure and optimising resources. Wilken emphasises that ERWAT will have to meet the growth challenges of the EMM as well as those of other local authorities. “The company can expect even bigger challenges regarding Green Drop status accreditation, compliance legislation, environmental requirements, efficient energy consumption and effective allocation and utilisation of funds in the future,” he says. “Ensuring the long-term sustainability of the company will depend on managing potential threats, such as high input costs, replacement and upgrading of ageing infrastructure and obtaining funding. However, the management structures are confident that we will be able to rise to these challenges as boldly and successfully as we have done in the past 20 years,” Wilken concludes.

t +27 (0)11 929 7000 •




R&D improving local authority outcomes Water is a finite resource and, in the context of South Africa, is becoming increasingly scarce.


HE PROVISION AND supply of water of adequate quality and quantity for economic and public health purposes remains a continuous governmental challenge, says Jay Bhagwan, executive manager: water use and waste management at the Water Research Commission (WRC). Local Government Supplier asked Bhagwan some key questions to determine the role the organisation played in the past year, specifically pertaining to local challenges at local authority level.

Strengthening regulation at local level The WRC’s portfolio of projects contributes towards government’s goal of improving the effectiveness of local governments to provide water services, as well as strengthening regulation and reducing the existing water services backlog, while stimulating livelihoods at a local level. “The biggest challenges are in rural municipalities; to date we have investigated institutional options for effective local-level management and delivery of water services. The research outputs on franchising have been realised in an experimental pilot, which is proving to be

a successful model and offers one option for municipal arrangements,” informs Bhagwan. Supporting this option, the WRC completed a study on people-centred approaches to management of water services. At an urban level, studies have looked at how local people can participate in supporting municipalities by unlocking procurement and operational hurdles.

Improving local financial management The WRC’s ongoing and future projects will investigate further opportunities to enhance local levels of service provision and look at institutional models for both centralisation and decentralisation. More importantly, emphasises Bhagwan, is the fact that effective municipal institutions are supported by a healthy and robust financial situation, which is one of the key outputs of government. “Three new projects that aim to support the strengthening of municipal finances have been initiated. These look at understanding proper tariff setting, establishing capital investment requirements for regional water management and establishing the funding requirements to

completely meet Green Drop requirements,” he says. Future research will put greater emphasis on municipal finances and funding of new infrastructure. The aim is that these initiatives further support government’s output towards establishing a robust water economic regulator. “In support thereof we have completed studies on the standardising of municipal accounts, since these form an importance base for water services revenue and consumer awareness. New initiatives will look at how customers value their water services and resources. This forms an integral part of regulation since user behaviour will influence water use, tariffs and affordability, and form the basis for regulation,” Bhagwan continues.

Assisting in water quality at local level On the water quality front, the WRC is working with other authorities on the development of an internet-based electronic water quality management system that will enable the water service authorities and the Department of Water Affairs to work together to attain a set of operational indicators for each segment. The WRC has supported projects to develop appropriate water




The WRC’s new portfolio of projects continues to provide solutions that support the Department of Water Affairs in the following ways: • developing tools, guidelines and appropriate institutional models for accelerating sustainable delivery of water and sanitation services • providing information that supports the development and application of water services legislation • improving understanding and knowledge on sanitation and hygiene education • management of brines • management of acid mine drainage • extending the implementation of water footprints, waste minimisation, cleaner production, cleaner consumption and clean technologies • climate change adaptation and mitigation • investigating the potential and technologies required for recovery and reuse of water from industrial, mining and domestic wastewaters (including greywater and stormwater) • furthering the knowledge and technologies for recovery and reuse of material and energy resources in water and wastewater management • enhancing ways to predict pollutants and their impacts • addressing infrastructure security and sustainability • optimisation of water and wastewater treatment processes • developing innovative and cutting-edge technologies and solutions • producing cutting-edge science and technology • investing in emerging contaminants affecting water quality, especially trace organics • energy efficiency and generation, as well as the energy water nexus • institutional strengthening – financing, regulation, etc.

treatment units based on membrane technology, gravity and wave power. This will not only enable rural households to access clean, safe drinking water, but will also foster local economic activity for the servicing and repair of the treatment units themselves. One example is the immersed membrane microfiltration system for the treatment of rural and industrial waters. In early research, a novel idea for an immersed membrane microfilter was investigated, based on a locally produced woven fibre microfiltration fabric. The woven fibre microfilter was designed to be operated as an inside-out tubular filter. However, with modifications, the microfilter could be operated in an outsidein configuration, as an immersed filter. The results indicated that the local development had great potential in immersed membrane microfilter applications. “The research teams obtained very good water qualities on both raw river water and biological sludges. The local system can be backwashed, which is not a common practice with other flat-sheet systems internationally. However, the overriding advantage of the local development is that it is extremely robust and inexpensive to produce, making it highly applicable for use in developing economies. Trials of this system have commenced in the Eastern Cape to assess the ease of use in rural households and reveal operational issues that might

arise when the units are used by the public,” Bhagwan informs.

Municipalities supported to tackle mine water challenges Another issue, which may often be overlooked by the general public, is local government’s challenges of dealing with the long-term impacts of mining activities, specifically related to water and the environment. The WRC assists local authorities in developing methods for the evaluation of mining activities, encouraging industries to switch to cleaner production rather than waste generation followed by treatment. The WRC has been conducting mine-water related research for over 10 years. The research is conducted with specific end-user groups in mind. These range from the general public to mine engineering staff, practitioners and specialists. The earlier research projects dating back to the year 1989 was based on gold and uranium mines. The focus areas of these studies were water requirements and pollution potential. Subsequent research projects focused on issues such as the impact of mining on the surface water environment, treatment options for mine effluents and the rehabilitation of mine soils. A significant amount of research is conducted on modelling techniques and predictive tools. The studies tackled issues

Ongoing and future projects will investigate further opportunities to enhance local levels of service provision

such as industry-wide water balance, development of low-cost passive water treatment systems and water modelling systems for the mining industry. From 2005, the WRC extended its scope to coal mines and acid mine drainage, where it focused on predictive tools for long-term water quality management in underground collieries, as well as the quantification of the potential and magnitude of acid mine drainage under South African opencast conditions. In 2005, the then Department of Minerals and Energy developed and subsequently implemented a regional mine closure strategy for hydraulically linked mines following a significant array of research conducted by the WRC on mine water that dated back to the year 1989. Specifically, the WRC published a report on mine closure strategy, The development of appropriate procedures towards closure of underground gold mines from a water management perspective, which made an important contribution to the development of the Department of Mineral and Energy’s closure strategy. The foundation of the mine closure strategy was that most mines are hydraulically interconnected with adjacent mines. As such, the closure of one mine within the region will often have impacts on the remaining mines. The last mine to cease operations in the region also ran the risk of bearing the cumulative burden imposed by all the other mines that ceased operations before it.  AC SE C T PR RE A OV DIT ID ED ER

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The mine closure strategy thus assisted in providing an equitable basis to share responsibility between neighbouring mines in the same region. It also contributed to long-term plans to deal with the legacy of poor quality water from mines.

Building capacity through research Does the WRC get involved in capacity building at local level? According to Bhagwan, most of the WRC’s projects are applied in nature, so intrinsically the research teams work in partnership with municipalities and industries in developing the research solutions. Capacity development is supported through the many topic-specific workshops, seminars and conferences that the WRC hosts throughout the year. “This is further complemented by the research reports and other popular documents and guidelines. Larger capacity building is achieved through the participation of MSc and PhD students on the research projects, some 450 in total, which become a very good specialist feed or pool to the water industry,” informs Bhagwan. Highlights of 2012 A key highlight in 2012 was the establishment of the Sanitation Fund for Africa. The WRC was awarded a grant of R20 million by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to establish and execute a sanitation research capacity building programme for African research institutions. The fund will ensure that up to 10 institutions from the respective countries in the East and Southern African regions will participate on topics identified. A further highlight was the hosting the 2nd International Faecal Sludge Management Conference in Durban in November 2012. The WRC, in partnership with eThekwini Municipality Water Services, BMGF, Irish Aid and other organisations, hosted and held the conference, which focused on the management and sustainability of dry on-site sanitation systems




in the developing world. The successful event was attended by 350 people, 60% of which were from 47 different countries. The event was privileged to showcase 47 innovations emerging from the Sanitation Grand Challenge Programme, funded by the BMGF. Another highlight was the release of the TT 522 The State of Non-revenue water in South Africa. The report on this study was published and distributed to all municipalities in South Africa. A unique aspect of the report is that the study has captured the non-revenue status of up to 70% of the municipal water supplied in South Africa. For the first time, the municipalities and their performance in dealing with the water losses was captured over a five-year period. Sadly, the report concluded that the battle against non-revenue water has not improved.

What does the future hold? Considering the constantly emerging challenges, Bhagwan says future research will continue to focus on greater innovation and development of cutting-edge technologies to respond to the issues of poor operations and maintenance,

competency and capacity constraints, reuse, energy efficiency, climate change constraints, emerging contaminants and the aspect of drinking water quality. The primary objective is to continue to provide knowledge that ensures reliable, affordable and efficient services to enhance the quality of life and contribute to economic growth. These objectives are in line with the Department of Water Affairs’ strategic objectives to adhere to the Water Services Act and the National Water Resource Strategy, as well as the new Department of Water Affairs framework strategy: Water for Growth and Development (Version 6). “We believe that the WRC’s programmes and projects are strongly orientated to the challenges. This is receiving – and will therefore continue to receive – greater attention,” states Bhagwan.



The water sector needs you, join WISA today! Promoting professional excellence in the water sector THE WATER INSTITUTE OF SOUTHERN AFRICA is a voluntary non-profit association comprising water sector professionals, companies, government departments, educational and research institutions, other associations, municipalities and water utilities as members. WISA’s vision is to “Promote professional excellence in the water sector through building expertise, sharing knowledge and improving quality of life” by providing platforms for the promotion, integration and application of scientific, engineering and management knowledge in the water-cycle through its newsletters, magazines, events and websites. WISA has one

international and six regional branches as well as 13 technical divisions. WISA Members enjoy many benefits centred on capacity-building and knowledge-sharing including: • Attendance at WISA events at discounted rates • Networking opportunities at Events • Opportunity to earn CPD points at the majority of the WISA events • Free copies of the “Water & Sanitation Africa” magazine as well as access to other WISA publications • Opportunity to contribute through WISA to the development of guidelines, regulations and laws.

WISA has two websites to assist in promoting its aims in the water sector: www. (institutional) and (knowledge). Advertising opportunities exist in the WISA websites and publications as follows: • WISA Website and Newsletter: Melissa Wheal at WISA on 011 805 3537 or email: • eWISA Website: Wilma Grebe at eWISA on 021 887 7161 or email: wgrebe@ • Water & Sanitation Africa Magazine: Ave Delport at 3SMedia on 011 467 6224 or 083 302 1342

Please contact Ms Melissa Wheal: tel 011 805 3537 • fax 011 315 1258 • e-mail



IWMSA sets the scene Waste management remains one of the key municipal services offered by local authorities.


HE INSTITUTE OF Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) is a membership-based non-profit organisation that supports professional and environmentally acceptable waste management practices. Local Government Supplier speaks to Dr Suzan Oelofse, the vice president of the IWMSA, about the function that the organisation fulfils at local authority level.

What is the key role of the IWMSA? We are a voluntary, membershipbased organisation and our main role is information sharing through networking opportunities, capacity building and training in the waste sector.

What role does the IWMSA play in terms of government waste management services? Are your members primarily private or public sector entities? The IWMSA acts as a mouthpiece for our members to government. Our membership includes individuals, private organisations and

municipalities. The majority of our members are from the private sector.

If one looks at waste management legislation, to what extent has the IWMSA contributed to the improvement of waste management standards and legislation in the past year? The IWMSA organised a number of workshops and seminars where information on the new developments regarding legislation and standards was shared. Our non-accredited training course also includes an entire section on legislation to capacitate our members. In this regard, the IWMSA has provided training to various municipalities and trained in excess of 300 municipal employees during the past two years.

What are the biggest challenges for municipalities when it comes to waste management and waste removal services? Various studies by the Department Environment

Affairs and the CSIR concluded that the four biggest challenges to municipalities relate to: • financial management • equipment management • labour (staff) management • institutional behaviour (management and planning).

Does IWMSA get involved in building capacity or assisting local authorities to address waste management challenges? Yes, we offer accredited and non-accredited training courses and have already provided training to a number of municipalities. The IWMSA believes firmly that continuous education in the arena of waste management is critical in achieving a cleaner and healthier environment for all in South Africa. This includes education of our members as well as other private sector organisations and governmental agencies. Together, despite facing sometimes seemingly over whelming challenges, we are determined to persevere in aiming for excellence in the management of all our countr y’s waste streams.

What have been key highlights of the previous year? WasteCon 2012, our flagship conference, was held in October in East London and was attended by just over 500 delegates. It is the largest and most comprehensive waste management conference in South Africa. The Top Green Awards for 2012 was presented at the WasteCon conference dinner. Ever y two years, organisations in the Eastern Cape Province are encouraged to participate in the Top Green Organisation Awards. Volkswagen South Africa (VWSA) walked away with the highest accolade in the waste industr y in the large organisations categor y. The judging process included a site visit and audit by a team of professionals led by the departments of Economic




Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism and the IWMSA, consisting of waste, air quality, climate change environmental and safety specialists. We have also trained 270 waste management staff at Durban Solid Waste. The employees were trained in USD 119303, USD 119555, USD 119557 and USD 119288, and are all employed in the various waste departments within the eThekwini Municipality.

How does sustainability principles compare from the private sector to the public sector? Sustainability principles are fairly universal; it is in the application of these principles that the distinction lies. The IWMSA does not monitor or audit its members and therefore cannot comment on their per formance against these principles.

To what extent do local authorities value sustainable waste management solutions? Does the IWMSA get involved in support and promotion of new

technologies and services to support more environmentally sustainable approaches? The key word here is sustainable solutions. This is what all local authorities should strive for. The role of the IWMSA is to create platforms where new technologies and services can be shared and their sustainability and applicability to South African conditions be debated.

How do you assist the industry to implement waste management solutions that is not only environmentally sustainable but also cost effective? We support the industry by creating opportunities to share experiences and information on how to become more cost effective.

What will be a key focus for the institute going forward in 2013/14? One of our key focus areas is to strengthen our relations with government to ensure that we work towards a shared vision and goal for improved waste management in South Africa.

Our six focus areas for the year include: • to provide accredited education and training relevant to an organisation/municipality’s needs, which will result in high ethical conduct and standards in the waste industr y • to facilitate government liaison with all spheres of government • to accredit our member organisations through the development of a model assessment standard/audit and to include mentorship as part of the package • to involve the IWMSA in social responsibility opportunities such as school programmes, suppor ting communities and providing assistance to those with existing programmes, resulting in a tangible grassroots impact. We would like to see projects benchmarked and used by municipalities as well as small and micro enterprises • to ensure that the IWMSA’s transformation policy is all-encompassing and has an influence on the needs of our members • to market and brand the IWMSA as an extension of our continuous communication portfolio.




Your comprehensive African infrastructure business tool. brings together the communities from three of 3S Media’s magazines – IMIESA, Water&Sanitation Africa and ReSource. It is a leading news hub, with in-depth articles, videos and podcasts, an events calendar, and full social media functionality.

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Fountain Civil Engineering

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Inkunzi Waste Management Solution +27 (0)13 794 4101 Interwaste

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Isibonelo Waste Solutions

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Itakane Trading 189

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Ken & Muf Transport Services

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Fuel 44

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Gecco Group

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Don’t Waste Services

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Khuduyane Quigley

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General Motors South Africa

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DQS South Africa

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Knysna Municipality

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Golder Associates Africa


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Swisscontact South Africa

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Wildfire Trading 45

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TGC Engineers t/a Thekwini Geocivils +27 (0)31 265 1777


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IMIESA is the ofÀcial magazine of the Institute of Municipal Engineering of Southern Africa

IMIESA is the ofÀcial magazine of the Institute of Municipal Engineering of Southern Africa (IMESA) and focuses on engineering and construction. IMIESA promotes the knowledge and practice of infrastructure development, maintenance and service delivery in Southern Africa. IMIESA provides its target audience with updates on industry developments, in-depth features and project information. SA Rand*


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Enhancing the quality of life +27 (0)11 709 8420


Crossing the Lui River flood plain in Zambia



Times have changed, but one thing has remained the same.

TThe magazine that engineers have called their own ed in they appear Engineers as April ) ’s (Denorco Monopumps advert 1979 IMIESA

since 1976.

AND HERE’S WHY... IMIESA is an award-winning magazine that promotes service delivery and the knowledge and practice of infrastructure development in Africa by reaching consulting engineers, municipal engineers and managers through its coverage of the following topics: Environmental Engineering • Mechanical Engineering • Sanitary Engineering Civil Engineering • Computer Engineering • Chemical Engineering • Electrical & Electronics Engineering • Geotechnical Engineering • Transport Engineering To subscribe and/or advertise visit or call +27 (0)11 233 2600




Providing innovative solutions In 2012, UWP Consulting celebrated its 40th anniversar y. The company has grown from its roots in the roads sector into a multidisciplinar y consulting engineering practice with a diverse por tfolio of challenging projects across Southern Africa.


WP OFFERS its services from 17 offices in South Africa, Zambia, Tanzania, Botswana and Zimbabwe. Cross-border projects now account for about 25% of the firm’s turnover. Four recently completed projects involving roads, structural engineering, fast-track project management and a unique environmental solution illustrate UWP’s expertise across multiple disciplines.

Traversing a flood plain The design and construction supervision of 81 km of the M10 along the east bank of the Zambezi River from Senanga to Maziba Bay in Zambia involved some creative engineering to traverse areas that are waterlogged for a number of months each year. This new surfaced road has been built east of the Zambezi River to replace the frequently flooded gravel road previously in use. The construction contract was completed by China New Era Construction ahead of schedule in February 2013. The new road crosses 14 tributaries of the Zambezi, several of them with flood plains where the water backs up from the Zambezi during the rainy season. The largest is the Lui River, which has a flood plain 1.5 km wide and a design flood volume of 1 500 m3/s. 1 000 km of fibre optic cabling Another complex brief was FibreCo Telecommunications’ ambitious project to install approximately 1 000 km of fibre optic infrastructure in South Africa within a punishing 12 months. UWP was appointed as the employer’s representative to manage construction by the EPC contractor, ZTE Corporation of China. To avoid delays, it was imperative that all the construction wayleaves were in place on time and UWP had a team dedicated to handling all approvals quickly and efficiently. Weekly progress meetings were held with the

contractor to discuss resources, identify risks and formulate action plans. At the peak of the project, construction was taking place at more than 40 locations with over 1 700 workers on the various sites.

A tight fit UWP has provided the Central University of Technology in Bloemfontein with a solution to fit a new building into a tight space on campus. The new BHP Billiton building includes a separate parking basement with a bridge link to the main structure which comprises a lower ground floor and three floors above ground. The project was challenging due to retaining walls being very close to existing building foundations. The exposure of big boulders during excavation made the design and construction of the retaining walls and column bases complicated due to the risk of disturbing the soil around the foundations of the existing structures. Water wise In another structural engineering project with an unusual twist, UWP Consulting has designed an innovative stormwater harvesting system as part of the engineering design for a new warehouse and offices for Cash Crusaders at Lanseria Corporate Estate in Gauteng.

ABOVE LEFT Laying 1 000 km of fibre optic cable ABOVE RIGHT Attenuation tank for water recycling

The system harvests rainwater run-off from the roofs and hardstands, filters it and then recycles the greywater for irrigation and flushing of toilets. The rainwater run-off is conveyed via an underground pipe system to an attenuation tank, where it is filtered through a rock system before being distributed into the greywater collection system. The tank was excavated below the main parking area, lined with a waterproof membrane and filled with dolomitic rock ballast. “Sustainability is fundamental to our delivery of professional and relevant consulting and management services,” says UWP’s MD, Craig Northwood. “Guided by our slogan, ‘Enhancing the quality of life’, we believe in creating a built environment that will make a difference and satisfy the needs not only of current users, but also of future generations.”

t +27 (0)11 709 8420 •




CESA tackles local government challenges The consulting engineering industr y witnessed a sharp downturn in the amount of money available from the public sector. This inevitably affected the private sector, which is largely dependant on the confidence that infrastructure generates in an economy.


RAHAM PIRIE, CEO of Consulting Engineers South Africa (CESA), provided a synopsis of the challenges and highlights that its members faced in the past year. “The sharp decrease in projects became quite problematic for our members, more so for the contractors than for the consultants. It means something was at least happening at the level of design and feasibility stage, but it wasn’t cascading down to actual delivery,” says Pirie. Delivery became seriously problematic, and the net effect it had on CESA’s members was that they had to start looking for opportunities abroad – specifically in Africa.

Aggressively tackling corruption Pirie highlights that the National Infrastructure Plan and the proposal of the 18 Strategic Infrastructure Projects (or SIPs) indicate government’s intent to establish and refocus government infrastructure spend in South Africa.

“Unfortunately we’ve grown very good with intent and providing the money, but dismal in terms of delivery.” He attributes the lack of delivery to three key issues: • corruption • the notion that the procurement of consulting engineering services are purely based on price and empowerment and not on quality • lack of capacity within the public sector. For the first issue – corruption – CESA has certainly shaken a few trees and received both positive and negative criticism for its fervent public stance. “Corruption is becoming endemic, impacting negatively on the industry. In fact, it is killing the industry in some areas,” says Pirie. In February, CESA made headlines when it announced a R1 million anti-corruption war chest. The aim of the initiative is to take legal action against municipalities and private companies that are suspected of irregularities in the award or securing of contracts.

“We are adding a compulsory levy to our members’ subscriptions for building up the war chest. Already, one of our affiliate members, Leads 2 Business, has provided an amount of R100 000 seed funding. We want to use the war chest to tackle, in a focused manner, the issues of corruption,” informs Pirie. Although CESA is targeting the war chest at all government levels, he foresees that it will primarily be used at local level. To illustrate its intent, CESA recently brought the first case of irregular activity detected during the procurement process to the attention of the Public Protector. CESA lodged a formal notification of potential corruption in a public sector entity through registered post, after junior council advised the organisation to follow that route. “We are still awaiting the outcome; we have set in motion the legal process, but it is costly and it takes a long time.” The initiative has received incredibly positive responses from members and the public, says Pirie, and CESA will further partner with industry NGOs that are active in the fight against corruption. CESA also put forward the notion of an Integrity Pact: a document signed at project award stage between client, consultant and contractor, binding the relevant parties to deliver with integrity.

Partnering with government Pirie emphasises that the issue of capacity is as disconcerting in South Africa as the issue of corruption. “There’s been a mass migration of skills in one form or another from the public to the private sector. This is especially true at local authority level – often you deal with a client that does not know how to engage with the consulting engineering industry.” He adds that a lack of trust, from both parties, has negatively impacted engagement




between the private and public sector in the past. “Delivery can only happen if there’s a partnership based on mutual trust. The problem is that there has been little trust in the past and maybe there are many reasons for that. One reason is that the private sector feels that it has to operate in an environment of policy certainty, which government presently does not provide. Equally, government doesn’t trust the private sector, which also probably stems from politics of the past,� says Pirie. The only way to solve these problems, he believes, is for the public and private sector to work together. Pirie emphasises that we need to collectively investigate new procurement models such as public-private partnerships and the concept of Framework Agreements, as they offers huge and unexploited opportunities to South Africa. Pirie says that local government usually has the biggest challenges. CESA has put forward a proposal to address the scarcity of managerial and technical skills in the public sector by using projects to build capacity. “Apart from using new construction projects as a means

for job creation, through the Expanded Public Works Programme, the private sector needs to go further and transfer skills within client entities. Procurement models will allow that to happen. It will allow us to discuss and partner with government in a trusting way.� CESA also addressed the lack of capacity at tender adjudication level. “We have actively commented on the draft regulations of the Public Finance Management Act. The new act will come into place on 1 April, so we eagerly await that. The Act deals with provincial and national covenants, but there is a need to also look at municipal procurement through the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA).�

candidates with professional registration after university. “The course provides mentors the ability to mentor effectively and asists mentees with the requirements to register with the engineering council in a proper way, in a minimum timeframe,� says Pirie. Together with the South African Black Technical and Allied Careers Organisation, CESA has put forward an application at the Construction Education and Training Authority (CETA) to do a mentoring programme. The two organisations were awarded R9 million

Critical emphasis on mentoring CESA attaches a high priority to mentoring and has partnered with the South African Institute of Civil Engineering (SAICE) to establish the Candidate Academy, which assists engineering FROM LEFT Abe Thela (deputy president), Naren Bhojaram (president) and Graham Pirie (CEO)



Local People. Global Experience.

SMEC South Africa is a highly successful local South African engineering consulting firm. (Vela VKE joined the SMEC Group in 2012.) SMEC is one of the world’s leading engineering and development consultancies with origins dating back to 1949. Headquartered in Australia, the SMEC Group employs over 5,000 people across more than 70 offices worldwide.

The SMEC Group provides consultancy services for the lifecycle of a project to a broad range of sectors including Transport, Water and Environment, Mining, Oil & Gas, Urban and Social Development, Energy and Renewables, Government and Advisory Services and Hydro Power. SMEC South Africa invests in corporate social responsibility initiatives in the areas of student development, aged care and emergency relief.

SMEC South Africa offices include Gauteng, Kwazulu Natal, North West, Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Northern Cape, Free State and Limpopo. In 2012, SMEC South Africa won awards for Zimbambele Poverty Alleviation Programme (SAICE) Baia de Luanda (CESA Best International project) and Hangar Street Pedestrian Bridge (SAISC) (See pictures above.)



Graham Pirie, CEO of CESA, and Victor Terblanche, CEO of Leads 2 Business

per annum each, distributed over a three-year period, to feed 150 candidate engineers, architects, quantity surveyors and other built professional with a certain gender and demographic profile into the industry. Through CESA, the industry also saw the implementation of job shadowing programmes, providing secondary school learners an opportunity to spend a few weeks with professional engineering firms during their winter holidays.


Sustainable infrastructure – a focus for 2013 Sustainability is a major focus for CESA in 2013. All CESA members need to have a quality management system based on ISO 9001 (2008) in place; many CESA members have become ISO certified as a result. To this end, CESA is one of very few, if not the only, local non-profit organisations with an ISO rating. In addition, it will be implementing another condition of membership this year that states that all members would have to subscribe to CESA’s sustainability framework. “Our international partner, FIDIC, has put excellent documentation together on project sustainability management. We will be using that to embellish our own framework, which will be launched at the CESA conference in November,� states Pirie. CESA is also an active member of the Green Building Council of South Africa and has put in place an interim steering committee for a similar body within the organisation focused on sustainable infrastructure. Although there are overlaps between buildings and infrastructure,

there are also some fundamental differences, which the new organisation will address. “With government rolling out the 18 Strategic Integrated Projects, one of the objectives should be to deliver in a sustainable way. But how do you measure a project’s sustainability, specifically in the context of a developing country? Those are some of the questions we will be addressing,� says Pirie.

About CESA CESA aims to be the ‘Proud Voice of Consulting Engineering in South Africa’. It promotes its members’ joint interests and, because of its standing, provides quality assurance for clients. Over 490 firms (employing over 22 000 people), which collectively earn a total fee income of over R20 billion per annum, are members of CESA. The organisation is committed to the principles of sustainability and the promotion of engineering excellence. CESA is a member of International Federation of Consulting Engineers and a member of the Group of African Member Associations.


T +27 51 451 1721 F +27 51 451 1857


Delivery with purpose “Proper Consulting Engineers strives to be a strong and diverse organization, which remains committed to ongoing empowerment and takes great pride in its representative workforce. Our Closed Corporation is 30% owned by a Historically Disadvantaged Individual (HDI), Mr Paul Mei who is an active managing member. As a ČŒUP we endeavour to always provide for the needs of our clients. We are well positioned to provide the necessary expertise and personal services to our clients, including the timeous implementation of projects.â€?



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Strong Reliable Machines, Strong Reliable Support +27 (0)11 928 9700




UTILITY INSTALLATION ISN’T AN OPEN AND CUT CASE. Busy cities don’t shut down for utility upgrades – especially when it comes to tearing up high-traffic areas. Vermeer has the planning tools and trenchless equipment to help complete your utility installation projects without shutting down a major street. When it comes to underground installations, look to an industry leader – Vermeer. Call Vermeer Equipment Suppliers on 011 608 0893 e-mail: VERMEER and the VERMEER LOGO are trademarks of Vermeer Manufacturing Company in the United States and / or other countries. © 2007 Vermeer Manufacturing Company. All Rights Reserved.



A work in progress The CEO of the Contractors Plant Hire Association (CPHA), Clive Wicks, spoke to Local Government Supplier about the organisation’s role and the importance that local authorities play as a source of income for the plant hire industry. What is the role of the CPHA and what have been the major challenges in the past year? The CPHA was formed to promote the development and welfare of the hire industry and protect the interests of its members, as well as develop and maintain a high standard of ethics and good practice among members. This is a constant “work in progress”. The challenge that is constantly been addressed is the correct training of plant operators, which will make the industry a much safer place to work in. In addition to this, the economy has not been kind to both the construction and plant hire industries over the past year. The underspending of numerous municipalities and government departments has created a lot of uncertainties and stress in the industries.

How is the CPHA addressing those challenges? Local government departments could be a major source of income to the hire industry. However, until the time that these sources release projects on a regular planned basis – as they should do – and overcome the incompetence that they are experiencing, the industry finds it very difficult to engage with municipalities.

To what extent does the CPHA deal with local governments on behalf of its members? We would only engage, on behalf of our members, when called upon to do so. On the other hand, we are constantly working to ensure that when local government departments engage with our members they will experience the professional standards that are in place. We need local government to play their part and act professionally as well. It should be a two-way street.

It is also essential not to sacrifice quality for the sake of quantity. CPHA-approved centres operate with this goal in mind In addition to this, late payments for work done is a major concern and local authorities really need to address the culture of non-payment.

Does the CPHA get involved in any training activities? Training is a major component of the CPHA’s overall role. During 2002, the CPHA was invited to take up a position with the Hire Chamber of the Services SETA to engage with the formulisation of training in the hire industry. At this stage, the Skills Development Act had been passed by Parliament and has, for a long time, been perceived as another “tax”. Many




companies chose to pay the levy, but misunderstood what it was really meant for. The Act in place was very clear in stating that a SETA would only engage with organised employer and organised labour constituencies. As the CPHA was the only association in the hire industry, we applied to become a Schedule 1 member of the Services SETA. The training path that we have chosen is not an easy one, and we have many challenges to overcome. However, unless we implement our minimum standards from the start, we will not



achieve our goals. It is of upmost importance to introduce training interventions that are as short as possible, but still comply with the registered qualification and unit standards. It is also essential not to sacrifice quality for the sake of quantity. CPHA-approved centres operate with this goal in mind. Over the past three years we have not been able to train any operators due to fact that our SETA has been under administration and has not been allocated any funding for training to take place. This is very disturbing, as our goal

to upskill the hire industry has taken a serious step backwards. We are hopeful that this will be rectified in the very near future.

What will be key focus points for the CPHA in 2013? The challenges for the coming year are numerous and, as I have said before, a number of them are works in progress. We look forward to the Bauma trade show to be held in September this year. This is the biggest trade show in the world, normally held in Germany, India and China, and this is the first time that this show will take place in Africa. The organisers have already reported that the exhibition space has been increased to 35 000 m2, which is almost double the originally planned figure of 20 000 m2. The invitation for the CPHA to be part of first Bauma exhibition in Africa is a huge endorsement for the association and the hire industry as a whole. Our members have for a number of years requested for the opportunity to showcase the industry and to view the latest technology on our home soil. Well it has now been made a reality and I hope the industry will take full advantage. The show will take place at Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, Johannesburg from 18 to 21 September.


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Formal partnership agreement signed Actom and Schneider Electric have finalised a partnership agreement formalising and extending their existing cooperative arrangement in catering to the requirements of the local market for state-of-the-art medium voltage distribution, automation and protection equipment.


HIS IS THE FIRST formal partnership agreement between the two companies to come into effect since the international nuclear power specialist company Areva sold its global transmission and distribution business interests in 2010, when Alstom Grid took over the transmission business and Schneider Electric acquired the distribution operations. Since Schneider Electric succeeded Areva T&D as Actom’s international technology partner and principal for medium voltage business, Jack Rowan (left), Actom’s executive chairman: transmission and distribution, and Carl Kleynhans, Schneider Electric’s country president: Southern Africa, sign the final partnership agreement. Behind them are (from left): Frederic Abbal, Schneider Electric’s executive vicepresident: medium voltage business; Mark Wilson, Actom’s Group CEO and chairman; and Andries Tshabalala, Actom’s Group executive director



both companies have complied with the terms of the partnership agreement previously in place between Areva T&D and the local group. “The new agreement, which takes over directly from the Areva T&D agreement, is the same as its predecessor in most respects, but it has been extended in terms of scope and flexibility,” explains Mark Wilson, Actom’s CEO and chairman. “In essence, the range of products on offer by Schneider Electric has been significantly extended, particularly with respect to the upper end of the power utility market. In addition, Actom’s increasing capabilities to customise these products enhance its flexibility to cater more effectively and widely to customers’ requirements, which include provisions for higher local content value-add than has applied previously. “The new agreement encompasses the same range of cooperative activities on both sides as previously, representing significant advantages

for both parties in terms of successfully penetrating our major markets, which we couldn’t achieve separately,” he adds. “What Schneider Electric offers is a range of world-class high-tech medium voltage products that lend themselves to being combined with a variety of other products and components, both imported and locally produced, adding up to value-added customised packages that fully meet the requirements of the local market, particularly in respect of large electrical infrastructural projects, on which the bulk of Actom’s business is based,” states Wilson. Power utilities, municipalities, the mining industry and the petrochemical sector are the main and potential users of the range of advanced medium voltage distribution equipment on offer by Schneider Electric. These include loose circuit breakers, gas-insulated ring main units and extensible switchgear, air- and gas-insulated primary distribution systems switchgear, air-insulated fixed pattern switchgear, substation automation systems and protective relays. “In common with similar partnership arrangements we have with other leading international original equipment manufacturers, our tie-up with Schneider Electric is an ideal arrangement in terms of meeting our customers’ requirements, as well as being of great benefit to our respective companies.” Wilson emphasises the importance of Actom’s standing as a BBBEE group, combined with its highly vertical integrated local manufacturing facilities and wide range of after-sales support services and national distribution network. These, together with its long-standing good relations with customers and reputation as a reliable high-quality producer and supplier, make it the perfect partner for international specialist manufacturers and suppliers like Schneider Electric.


Latest technical reference guide released AfriSam has released the latest edition of its industry-renowned Technical Reference Guide, an update that includes the latest facts and figures on AfriSam cement, aggregate and readymix products, as well as general information and guidelines on concrete technology.


TARTING OUT 15 years ago as an A4 ring-bound file focusing on the correct use of cement, aggregate and readymix products, the guide has evolved to become the industry’s foremost single repository of information on construction materials. With thousands of copies in circulation throughout South Africa and updates released every two years, this unique publication is an industry institution, sought after by users in a spectrum of fields, including engineering students and lecturers, architects, specifiers, general contractors and concrete manufacturers. The 2013 edition features a slightly different, more user-friendly format than before and comes with an accompanying electronic version on CD. For the first time, AfriSam is offering the guide on a memory stick in e-book format and will load the publication onto the company website in due course. “The ongoing publication and refinement of the Technical Reference Guide is part of a robust in-house Customer Value Management initiative that seeks to unlock value for AfriSam customers across the board in new and innovative ways,” says Mike McDonald, AfriSam product manager. “Our ultimate aim is to become our customers’ technical partner of choice in the cement and concrete arenas, and we’ve made several changes within the company to support this objective.

“One of these developments is our ‘single selling organisation’ strategy that will ultimately create a single point of contact for all our customers, providing support across all our products. We’ve also created a customer support team that includes technical consultants who call on customers at their sites to help optimise their processes and are equipped to conduct investigations into product performance issues. Until recently this service was fragmented within our organisation and we’ve now consolidated it into a single department.” McDonald says another newly established team, the Centre of Product Excellence, is geared up to recommend the best material for specific applications and this focused service is already achieving cost reductions that benefit customers. The department has a training component, in which retail customers receive the necessary technical training to use concrete in line with industry best practice. “Cement is a very valuable resource and involves a carbon-intensive production process,” he continues. “For these reasons cement must be used in the most effective way if its impact on the environment is to be mitigated. We feel so strongly about this that we’re become involved in training emerging civil engineers in concrete technology at university level. “At the same time, we’re continuously working to reduce the carbon footprint of our cement and our efforts in this field have

The Customer Value Management initiative seeks to unlock value for AfriSam customers in new and innovative ways

resulted in our becoming the first and only company to introduce a CO2 rating system on all our cement products, indicating the carbon footprint of each product relative to the world average. This information is printed on every bag to enable consumers to make informed and responsible decisions on the products they purchase.” AfriSam’s dedicated product development team focuses on the latest technical innovations in cement and concrete worldwide and is tasked with developing new generation products. One of the most recent innovations to emerge is an advanced specialist product designed for road stabilisation applications. Roadstab Cement offers civil engineers an excellent alternative for road design, having been developed to achieve superior stability across a broad range of road material types. The product offers enhanced performance, even with soils with a high plasticity index. AfriSam has also had exciting results from tests conducted on the higher clay-containing soils found in the Free State. Quality assurance has been elevated to a central function within the company, ensuring all AfriSam products are fit for purpose and meet market requirements.




DPI Plastics expands its reach in Africa DPI Plastics is expanding its geographical footprint across Africa, after entering into a supply agreement with the DRC branch of AST International in May 2013.


ST INTERNATIONAL IS a joint venture between Dawn and Saffer that supplies South African manufactured and branded plumbing and sanitaryware products to retailers, builder’s merchants, plumbers’ merchants and hardware stores. Dawn and Saffer established AST

additional neighbouring markets that hold considerable potential, and the company plans to be among the first to take advantage of this gap in the market and to play a role in the continued economic growth on the continent.” AST International is based in Johannesburg and boasts an extensive distribution network, with branches currently located in Angola, the DRC, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia Rajesh Naval, export manager, and Zimbabwe. DPI Plastics The company of fers wareInternational in 2007 to become the dominant house and distribution facilities for branded brand vehicle and first choice supplier of qual- product ranges that are complemented with ity branded building products in Africa. DPI showroom and office facilities – an offering Plastics is a member of the Dawn Group and has entered into an agreement to supply plumbing products to the newly established DRC branch of AST International, which is expected to officially open by August 2013. DPI Plastics’ export manager, Rajesh Naval, believes that the DRC market has unlimited potential for growth. “Africa has been the main focus of the world in recent years, and the DRC has the potential to be a driving engine of the African economy in the near future, due to the fact that it is blessed with a vast abundance of unexplored natural resources.” Due to South Africa’s reputation for being “the gateway to Africa”, Naval is confident that Johannesburg-based DPI Plastics can gain measurable market share in the DRC through AST International. “As a South Africa-based company with 100% owned or joint venture factories in Namibia, Botswana, Angola, Tanzania and Mauritius, DPI Plastics has identified

“DPI Plastics has identified additional neighbouring markets that hold considerable potential.”

RIGHT Two examples of PVC plumbing fittings available from the company



that sets AST International apart from its African competitors. Poor infrastructure is currently a major challenge across the DRC, and Naval indicates that there will be a major drive for infrastructural development and upgrades in the country in the short term. “By establishing a presence in the country at the early stages of its development, DPI Plastics will provide local contractors with high-quality and cost-effective products that are locally manufactured, thereby ensuring future sustainability.” Once the DRC branch is fully established, DPI Plastics plans to extend its product offering to AST International. “DPI Plastics will initially supply plumbing products to AST International in the DRC. As demand increases, however, we will look at introducing mining and civils products to the market too. Looking further afield, DPI Plastics is also aiming to supply its range of plumbing products to AST International branches in Nigeria and Tanzania in the near future,” he maintains.


Be sure... be Capsure As an alternative to conventional pin-driven GET (Ground Engaging Tool) retention systems, Caterpillar’s Capsure hammerless innovation makes a difference in terms of faster serviceability and safer tool changeover times.


OR CAT TRACK-TYPE tractors, Caterpillar recently introduced the CR550 and CR500 hammerless Capsure ripper tip and shank protector series, which is designed to work together as an optimal ripping system. This series can also be used as a retrofit option on previous R500 and R550 rippers. “Caterpillar’s Capsure retention technology is remarkable both in its simplicity and effectiveness,” points out Deon Delport, Barloworld Equipment’s product application specialist for Cat GET products. All maintenance crews need is a 180 degree anti- or clockwise turn with a three-quarter inch ratchet to either loosen or secure the Capsure locking system when replacing GET tips and shank protectors. A positive stop is cast into the tip and protector to prevent over-rotation. For instances where extreme packing occurs, a standard pry bar should be used to loosen the tip and/or shank protector before unlocking the Capsure lock, always using an approved lifting device for safe tool interchanges. LEFT Installing Capsure GET systems is a simple and effective process that, together with the safe support provided by an overhead crane, only requires a three-quarter inch ratchet for installation and removal BELOW The Capsure locking system




Centralising compact plant business Lambson’s Hire has relocated its compact plant facility close to its head office and central workshop in Benrose, Johannesburg.


HE COMPACT PLANT operation is centralised from the new facility, which has its own dedicated workshop and is controlled by the existing specialised compact plant team who are also trained to conduct on-site ser vicing and maintenance. Devin van Zyl, CEO of Lambson’s Hire, explains the rationale behind the decision to relocate the compact plant facility. “Demand for our compact

plant equipment has grown significantly and, as a result, we’ve steadily extended the range to meet market requirements.” Van Zyl adds that these additions have, however, challenged this leading hire company’s traditional slogan of “we hire anything that fits on a 1 t bakkie or can be towed behind it” – hence the origin of what is now known as its Compact Plant Division. “This mindset has had to change, with the addition of o 3 t hydrostatic swivel-tip dumpers and 3 t ride-on rollers, not t o n

mention our 2 t wheel loaders, a fleet of tower lights, 12 and 14 m trailer-mount boom lifts. “Next year we will definitely move beyond the 3 t threshold with the addition of new products that we’ve identified as excellent complements to our existing range, extending to a capacity weight of around the 4.5 t mark. “From this vantage point, we have no idea where the definition of compact plant is heading and this will have to be the subject of debate in our industr y. I imagine the cut-off could be about 7 t, but it’s hard to tell. The industr y has become ver y unpredictable and we’ve been obliged to become much more flexible to meet customer requirements.”

FAR LEFT The ride-on rollers available from Lambson’s Hire can be readily delivered to the customer’s site when and where needed within the greater Gauteng region MIDDLE Trailer-mounted dieselpowered tower lights are available from Lambson’s Hire BOTTOM Lambon’s Hire has expanded its range of hydrostatic swiveltip dumpers




Construction equipment in its ‘natural habitat’ Atlas Copco South Africa will showcase its Construction Technique business area to construction- and rental-oriented audiences at the first Bauma exhibition to take place on African soil, during September 2013 in Johannesburg.


TLAS COPCO Construction Technique’s general manager, Philip Herselman, states that the company’s objectives at the show are to make customers aware of the new fourth business area in the Atlas Copco Group and to send a strong message that will leave customers convinced that Construction Technique is the reference for construction-related equipment. The primary reason for the establishment of Construction Technique in the fourth quarter of 2011 was a commitment to ensure that customstomers always come first st across all facets off the business. “This necessitated an intense and ongogoing focus in two main ain areas; firstly, we are concentrating on increaseasing sales and service synergies between the four constr uction-r elated ted divisions (portable compressors and generators, ors,

road construction equipment, construction tools, and parts & service); secondly we are addressing various growth initiatives, including a significant enlargement of our Southern African footprint, so that we are there for our customers irrespective of how remote their location is,” elaborates Herselman Directed primarily at attendees from subSaharan Africa, Bauma Africa is, according to Herselman, the ideal platform for Atlas Copco Construction Technique to display some of its construction equipment. “Organisers are predicting that Bauma Africa will attract great local as well as international interest, and we see Bauma Africa as the benchmark platform to showcase construction related equipment and therefore it is very important for Atlas Copco to participate. Visitors to Bauma Africa will find themselves on a Af ‘construction site’ where they will ‘ have the opportunity to see our equipment in its ‘natural habitat’,” explains Herselman. “Our road construction equipment division will showcase

a popular size roller and paver specific for this market; portable energy will be represented by low-pressure compressed air equipment, an on-site power generator and lighting tower and, finally, pneumatic handheld equipment, possibly some hydraulic attachments and light compaction construction equipment from our Construction Tools Division will round off our ‘construction site’ exhibit.” FAR LEFT Atlas Copco light tower – designed and built to withstand demanding on-site conditions MIDDLE Atlas Copco MB1700 hydraulic hammer BOTTOM The CC1200C double drum vibratory roller




Green Star rating for new Sisonke District office The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Public Works’ new Sisonke District office in Ixopo is the first provincial government building to achieve a five-star office design rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA).


HE BUILDING illustrates that Corobrik bricks present designers with an opportunity to achieve sustainable buildings of quality with due sensitivity to key environmental imperatives. Architect Steve Kinsler specified the use of Burnt Apricot face bricks as well as Corobrik concrete pavers and retaining blocks for this project. “Important considerations were that all building materials had to be sourced locally. The closest factory to the site was our Eston Brick factory from which the Burnt Apricot face brick was procured and supplied,” explains Mike Ingram, Corobrik’s director of sales for KwaZuluNatal and Border. Kinsler points out that the Green Star rating system awards points for materials sourced from within either a 50 km radius of the site or, failing that, a 400 km radius. “Burnt Apricot Satin face bricks and NFX and NFP stock bricks were sourced from the Eston Brick factory located 70 km from the site.” The office is the first of a four-phase project and comprises two single-storey buildings – an

office block and conjoined maintenance block – as well as a separate garage block. The total floor area measures 858 m2, the commercial office area 550 m2 and the car park 193 m2. “The office building has a long and narrow form, with the north orientation increasing the solar gain in winter and reducing it in summer,” says Kinsler, adding that eco-friendly and sustainable features predominated when it came to both practical features and aesthetics. One of the main stipulations was minimisation of energy usage. “At the time of purchase, the site was covered with a mismanaged alien tree plantation that had become infested with alien invasive weeds. The new office block has an extensive roof garden that is home to nearly 100 indigenous plant species. The insulation properties of the building were optimised through the roof garden over the main office spaces and the installation of insulation in the cavities of the brick external walls, below the floors and in the roof. All external windows are double glazed,” he continues. While natural daylight minimises the amount

of artificial light needed, natural air flow is maximised, removing the need for mechanical air conditioning. Solar water geysers provide hot water while lighting systems use high-efficiency lights fitted with motion sensors. The offices are naturally ventilated having no ducts for air supply or cooling. A heat-pump circulates warm water through the floors in order to meet winter space heating requirements. Due to the long narrow form of the building, 85% of the interior spaces are naturally lit, while motion sensors automatically switch lights off when no one is in the room. Potable water consumption is reduced through the use of water-efficient sanitary fixtures and rainwater is harvested for washing cars and flushing toilets. This reduces the runoff from hard surfaces during storms. Cycling facilities are provided for building users and visitors while preferential parking is reserved for fuel efficient cars and motorcycles. The remainder of the site is being returned to its endemic Natal Mistbelt Grassland habitat. All plants are dry land indigenous species with no irrigation requirements. Ingram points out that the use of clay brick further enhances the holistic environmental value of the project.

ABOVE The new Sisonke District office in Ixopo is the first provincial government building to achieve a five-star office V1 design rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa. Corobrik’s Burnt Apricot face brick has been used in the construction of this KwaZulu-Natal Department of Public Works office LEFT The front entrance shows how various building materials combine to produce a dignified provincial building while at the same time using locally produced materials



Local Government Supplier 2013  

The 2013 edition of Local Government Supplier

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