LETTER TO PRESIDENT JACOB ZUMA, MINISTER PRAVIN GORDHAN AND MAYOR DANNY JORDAAN BY UDM PRESIDENT BANTU HOLOMISA
Honourable Mr D Jordaan
Executive Mayor of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality
Vuyisile Mini Square
Honourable Mr Pravin Gordhan
Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs
Republic of South Africa
120 Plein Street, Floor 11 Room 1110
Honourable Mr JG Zuma
President of the Republic of South Africa
Private Bag X1000,
SERVICE DELIVERY CHALLENGES IN WARD 30 NELSON MANDELA BAY MUNICIPALITY
The above matter has reference.
On the 13 of September 2015, I visited ward 30 of Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality in Port Elizabeth and conducted a walk about at the ward and had a dialogue with residents, in the company of the newly elected United Democratic Movement (UDM) Ward Councillor, Mr Mandla Lous Faltein.
The ward mainly covers two settlements, Kwamagxaki and Veeplaas. During our interaction with residents of both settlements, and the subsequent engagements with the ward councillor, the residents raised the following issues for urgent consideration by authorities.
The Kwamagxaki residents raised the following issues, in no order of priority:
• Leaking water pipes and meters;
• Roads with potholes and some untarred;
• Water fountains which are reducing the durability of their houses;
• Inaccurate municipal electricity and rates billing system;
• Delays in the issuing out of title deeds to deserving people;
• Lack of clarity on the substance and implementation of the indigent policy as some households are headed by children and or unemployed persons;
• The long turn-around time of the community services department, resulting to unhealthy environment and the mushrooming of illegal dumping sites; and
• Daily increasing levels of crime.
The Veeplaas residents raised the following issues, in no order of priority:
• High rate of unemployment and lack of opportunities thereof;
• Lack of or poor street lighting and playing grounds;
• Slow pace of houses delivery resulting to unending mushrooming of shacks;
• Overcrowded and poor state of the clinic;
• Road with pothole and some untarred;
• Sewerage spilling over the street due to poor maintenance;
• No legally agreed to, occupation of the official buildings (incubator) by political parties in the ward;
• Lack of communication between the ward councillor and municipal officials with regard to show houses; and
• Lack of support for local initiatives like the carwash, cleaning of the Chetty River, fencing of cemeteries which initiatives may result to job opportunities.
Although the two communities may not share exactly the same socio-economic circumstances, their service delivery issues raised above, are similar and related. This reality presents an opportunity for the municipality to consider implementing ward-based service delivery and development approach as an intervention method.
The ward based planning and implementation approach to service delivery, which is central in the Back to Basics Campaign championed by the Minister of Corporative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Pravin Gordhan, is the way to go. This approach may be piloted in this ward and be implemented to all other 59 wards of the municipality.
This will also provide an opportunity for residents to be at the centre of planning and implementing their own developmental programmes, thus owning up to their responsibilities and rights.
I urge your respective offices, to seriously consider the suggested intervention and be in contact with the ward councillor and residents of these communities as a matter of outmost urgency.
Your prompt and decisive intervention is awaited and appreciated.
Yours in service,
Mr. Bantu Holomisa, MP
President of the United Democratic Movement