EFF march over service delivery

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) took to the streets last Friday on an organised march to the Civic Centre to protest the lack of service delivery in Msukaligwa.

They are on a mission to forge a working relationship between the community, under the leadership of EFF, and the municipality to ensure the good service delivery they deserve.

Issues raised at the march were poverty, the high unemployment rate, lack of proper housing, escalation of informal settlements and the high crime rate.

“We see how our municipality is in shambles due to poor leadership and it is a disgrace with the lack of service delivery, corruption and political favouritism,” said regional leader Thabang Phoku.

He added this was enough. Action had to be taken and as the EFF they were ready to assist.

The long standing issue of Ext 7, which has been a bone of contention between the party and the municipality, was raised, with the EFF adamant that it was land for the people.

Early in May, residents of Wesselton invaded government land after EFF members urged them to take land by force in Ext 7 near Thusi Village.

They invaded in numbers, marking their stands, while the EFF were adamant that they were ready for any backlash or police action.

The municipality applied for a court interdict with the judge granting them an interim order, which interdicts and restrains people from erecting any dwelling structure at Ext 7.

It also declared that the municipality was entitled and authorised to remove all poles, fences and similar structures erected on the property and the local police were requested to take all the necessary steps to give effect to the order.

The EFF disregarded the court order, encouraging people to move into Ext 7 to the ire of the municipality.

The party submitted a memorandum to council, with a list of demands expected to be met within 14 working days.

Among the demands is the provision of residential land as well as formalisation of informal settlements like Enyibe and KwaMabuza, to name but two. The two communities recently held service delivery protests where memorandums were received by council.

Other demands were transparency in land allocation, distribution of RDP houses and transparency in employment to eliminate nepotism.

They demanded additional health care clinics to be constructed and mobile clinics to be deployed to farm areas and the upgrading of old infrastructure.

The most contentious demand was that of the person(s) responsible for the decision to fence the Civic Centre to pay all expenses from his or her pocket, with the EFF alleging they were aware that the fencing was not sponsored by the Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) as previously communicated by the municipality.

In February, long sections of the fence were erected along the perimeter of the grounds along Breytenbach and Kerk Street, while only a short section was erected along the northern side in Taute Street.
Since then, work has come to a standstill and the southern side of the grounds in Smuts Street has been left entirely unfenced.

At the time, when asked why work had stopped, the municipal spokesman Mr Mandla Zwane, said the installation had stalled due to the development of designs for the two main entrance and exit points.

Executive Mayor of Msukaligwa, Mr M.S Nkosi, received and signed the memorandum on behalf of Council, informing the EFF that feedback would be given in the allocated days.


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Amanda Mthembu

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