Two little words: MUST and MAY – but very crucial in water regulation

We are all familiar with the following conversation in our homes:

“Mommy MAY I go and play outside? No, you MUST first finish your homework!

In the water services context, we can say: “Minister you MAY publish guidelines but you MUST monitor municipalities,” and this is exactly what the Water Services Act (Act 108 of 1997) stipulates.

Read more: Two little words: MUST and MAY – but very crucial in water regulation

From political ideas to water law- what is a proper process for policy development?

Last month I promised to spend some time explaining the difference between policies, strategies, white papers, legislation, and regulations as well as guidelines.

I recall a heated debate within the Department of Water Affairs (DWA) some years ago with a learned colleague - an advocate of course - who argued that 'policy' is only that kind of policy that can be made by politicians and where there is no role for officials and water experts. Is that really true? Decide for yourself at the end of my series.

Read more: From political ideas to water law- what is a proper process for policy development?

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