Impacts of hydrological drought management on sustainable livelihood in QwaQwa, South Africa
Manyama, Mpho Jason
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Water plays an important role in an economy, environment and sustainable development. However, water shortage can really threaten the sustainability of the livelihood activities of people. Drought, is one of the disasters that has recently affected most countries including South Africa. The effect of drought can be realised in food insecurity that poses serious threats to people’s livelihoods. The study explores the effects of the impact of hydrological drought in Maluti-a-Phofung Local Municipality, focusing on the community of QwaQwa. The objective of the study is to determine how the municipality is managing hydrological drought, in order to provide sustainable service delivery. In addition, the study addresses how community members are empowered to live and mitigate drought. The study was conducted with the employees of the Maluti-a-Phofung Local Municipality and the community of Qwaqwa. Qualitative and quantitative methodologies were employed using purposive sampling. A sample size of one hundred and forty-eight (148) respondents was used wherein one hundred and ten (110) were community members; thirty (30) were municipal officials at non-management level; and eight (8) municipal officials at management level. Selected questions were used to collect the data to fit the research questions of the study. The experience of the impact of drought among females and males was tested using t-test in analysing the hypothesis. The study findings revealed that some hydrological drought management aspects were not managed properly which had impact on a shortage of water to the community. Furthermore, the results reveal that the majority of community members were highly affected by poor service delivery where the quality of water supply was not according to norms and standards as prescribed by legislation. Communities were not fully empowered through early warnings and water was delivered in different forms, such as boreholes, water trucks, and where the community was unable to get water, unprotected wells were used.