The cholera-contaminated rivers within the Kruger National Park pose no danger to tourists and staff, said South African National Parks (SanParks) on Monday.
Dr David Mabunda, the chief executive of SanParks said there was no danger of contracting cholera from drinking water in the park despite its rivers having tested positive for cholera.
"We can safely say that our drinking water is safe from any bacteria that might lead to cholera as it is well treated before it reaches the water systems," he said.
Mabunda's reassurance came after 8 015 people were treated for cholera in SA since an outbreak began in November last year. About 50 people have died of the water-borne disease across South Africa.
Risk of infection low
Rivers that flow through the park that tested positive for cholera included the Crocodile, Olifants, Shingwedzi and the Luvuvhu rivers.
"Even though these tests were positive, they don't hold any danger to anyone as the only way people can become infected is if they are exposed to this water. As you may not swim in any rivers in the park, the risk of infection is very low," Mabunda said.
No cholera cases had been reported inside the park so far. The park's veterinary surgeons and scientists also confirmed on Monday that there was no risk to any animals, including marine life, since the cholera strain only affected humans.
Mabunda said more tests would be conducted on the affected rivers in the next two weeks. – (Sapa, February 2009)
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