Johannesburg in water crisis: Tyla’s song used as a protest song

The recent water protest in Emmarentia, a northern suburb of Johannesburg, South Africa, has captured the attention of the public, not only for its serious underlying issues but also for its unexpected musical choice. On Tuesday, July 2nd, angry residents took to the streets to block rush-hour traffic, expressing their frustration over a nine-day water outage affecting their community.

The protesters, holding placards with slogans like “no water H20 [water] in HH2 [Hursthill 2 Reservoir]” and “Day 9 no water,” attracted further attention when they decided to blast Tyla’s chart-topping song “Water” as the soundtrack to their demonstration. This unconventional move, rather than the usual chanting and singing, added an unusual element to the otherwise serious protest.

According to Johannesburg Water, the water crisis in the area was caused by airlocks in the system, which the entity’s team was working to resolve by flushing out the network to improve supply pressure and protect the infrastructure from further pipe bursts. The decision to use Tyla’s “Water” as the protest’s anthem, while initially surprising, may have been a symbolic gesture to highlight the urgent need for a reliable water supply in the affected neighborhoods.As the water crisis continues to affect communities across South Africa, the Emmarentia protest serves as a reminder of the importance of addressing such fundamental issues, while also showcasing the resourcefulness and creativity of residents in their efforts to draw attention to their plight.