Customers irate as Joburg supermarkets run dry

Lizeka Tandwa, News24

Johannesburg - Supermarkets around Johannesburg are battling to cope with the increasing shortage of water supply.

Melville Spar store manager, Godfrey Madisha, said the situation became so volatile on Thursday morning, customers fought among themselves to get the last of the water.

Madisha said when he tried to order more water from his suppliers, he was told that stock had run out.

"It has been a problem for customers because whenever we tell them we are sold out, they get angry and demand water from us. Today I had to order 80 cases of water from distributors before they ran out," Madisha told News24.

Northcliff Pick n Pay manager who wished to remain anonymous said he had been running around the city trying to get any distributor to sell him a supply of water.

"It's a problem for us. We are running out of stock and no one can sell us anything. Many of our customers are frustrated but what can we do?" he said.

Northgate Checkers ‎manager Gerhard Cornelius said although they have not run out of water yet, he was concerned that his days were numbered.

"We are lucky that our head office has planned in advance for this situation. I do have fears that my days are numbered. We will run dry if the situation persists. Our customers are also concerned about the situation. All we can do is pray for rain," Cornelius told News24

On Wednesday News24 ‎reported several parts of Johannesburg were without water due to water levels dropping in reservoirs.

This comes after the City of Johannesburg announced that it was implementing level two water restrictions.

The shortage of water follows severe drought in some parts of the country and the heatwave in Johannesburg.