16 October 2017 Read: 144
“If the community wants to know what is happening they need to ask their ward councillors, that is why they are there.” More than a month has passed and still no response has been received from the office of the spokesperson for the Ba-Phalaborwa Municipality, Jonas Mahesu. We called him to enquire about the reason for his silence on urgent issues such as the proposed increase in property rates and the illegal hawker pandemic.
We also wanted to know why the residents are forced to do the municipality’s job through the organizing of cleaning crews to clean up the town centre. Furthermore, we wanted Mahesu to supply us with an actual road maintenance plan as he claims that one exists.
“You must remember that we have to service not only the Phalaborwa town, but also the roads of the outlying areas such Namakgale and Lulekani and so we order premix tar from our supplier, when potholes form. The problem is that we did not order enough premix and we are now waiting for delivery to be made so that we can continue working.”
He became agitated when we asked him why the roads department has to wait for a pothole to form before ordering premix to plug it. We asked him for an explanation regarding the state of Tulbach street, where work was started, but not completed before the road crew moved on to another road. “Please send me pictures of the affected road so that I can bring it under the attention of the department,” he said.
In the meantime, a group of community members sacrificed their weekend to clean up parts of the town centre. With the help of a community group from Namakgale, Kasi Junxion, 43 refuse bags full of litter was collected in a space of just two hours.
At the time of going to print, Mahesu had still not prioritised responding to an enquiry highlighting the desperation of their community.