Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane does not know the definition of a Gupta-linked company.

"I wish someone could ask me how many projects are done by Group Five," Mokonyane told reporters at Parliament on Friday morning, before delivering her department's budget.

Mokonyane was asked how many Gupta-linked companies did work for her department and its entities.

"I don't know the definition of a Gupta-linked company. I'm not obsessed with it."

She said she was obsessed with companies who had been working in the sector for a long time and inflated costs.

Last year, the Competition Commission found that Group Five and six other listed construction companies were involved in price collusion in the sector. A R1.4bn fine was imposed on the companies, Fin24 reported on May 8.

One of the tenets of her budget was transformation of the water sector, by including women, youth and black-owned companies through the department's infrastructure programme.

"Water storage has become quite paramount," she said.

Raising dam walls, exploring for groundwater, reusing and recycling waste water, desalination and the treatment of acid mine drainage were some of the solutions being looked at.

"As a country we are the 30th driest country in the world and as such it is important that we combine traditional water storage methods, coupled with an investment in new and innovative solutions to water storage, conservation and management," her budget statement reads.

She commended South Africans for the way they handled the drought, but expressed concern about the Western Cape, which had been declared a disaster area. The province required the department's urgent intervention.

The department and national disaster management centre were intervening on emergency projects and short to medium term solutions.

She encouraged the province's residents to save water and municipalities to maintain infrastructure to stop leaks.