Water readiness plan for National Arts Festival in Makhanda

The 45th edition of the National Arts Festival kicks off in Makhanda in a month's time.

The municipality of the historic Eastern Cape town says its water problems have stabilised and Gift of the Givers will be partially compensated for the drought relief work it has done there.

There had been an earlier fallout when the non-profit organisation said it would withdraw its assistance because private companies were to be paid for its efforts.

Read: Makhanda drought relief controversy: Where has the money gone?

On Weekend Breakfast, Africa Melane asks festival chief executive officer (CEO) Tony Lankester what impact the influx of visitors next month will have on the water situation.

Lankester says a dual approach will ensure that neither festivalgoers nor residents will go without.

On the one hand we have a whole plan in place to make sure that's there's enough water for our visitors - we're working with the guesthouses, with the hotels...

Tony Lankester, CEO - National Arts Festival

The other part of the approach is to make sure that this influx doesn't damage or further hinder the already fragile water ecosystem and doesn't deprive residents of the water that they need.

Tony Lankester, CEO - National Arts Festival

We are looking at a plan that involves bringing in water from out of town... and obviously asking everyone to practice very responsible water usage.

Tony Lankester, CEO - National Arts Festival

Lankester says this year's festival is jam-packed with quality productions, as usual.

He advises visitors to book for the top shows they want to see, but at the same time not to fill up their schedule.

You have to leave a couple of gaps for while you're here because there are these hidden gems that don't immediately leap out at you from the programme, but once the festival starts they become the productions that everyone speaks about.

Tony Lankester, CEO - National Arts Festival

For more on the festival, listen here:

The festival takes place from 27 June to 7 July. For progamme details go to https://www.nationalartsfestival.co.za/.


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