Protests flare up again in NC town
PROTESTS were ignited again in Barkly West last night following a meeting that was held yesterday afternoon, while the community continues to wait for answers from the authorities relating to ongoing service delivery complaints.
The crossing between Mataleng and De Beershoogte, which was closed to traffic last week with rocks and burning tyres, was again barricaded last night in a renewed shutdown.
Independent councillor Mentley Bezuidenhout said that community members, who are now calling for the removal of the chief financial officer and the mayor at Dikgatlong Municipality, had not been addressed by the MEC for Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs or the premier, in accordance with their list of demands.
He added that they were also questioning a R1.2 million tender that was approved for the valuation of property while only R350 000 was allocated in the budget for the year.
“The municipality is hiring a paper folding machine at a cost of R45 000 per month while nine people are being paid a stipend of R1 500 each month to manually fold the papers.”
Bezuidenhout indicated that the municipal premises were left unguarded for three days last week due to apparent non-payment to the security company.
“We want a Section 106 investigation to be conducted at the municipality.”
The Dikgatlong Municipality did not respond to media enquiries.
A protest took place near the Nkandla informal settlement in Hartswater over the weekend, where the building at the entrance of the weighbridge and a bulldozer at the dumping site were set alight on Saturday.
Roads were also obstructed with rocks and burning tyres.
Protest action started on Friday afternoon after it was believed that R3.2 million that was supposed to be allocated by Phokwane Municipality for the electrification of Nkandla was diverted elsewhere.
Police spokesperson, Captain Olebogeng Tawana, said that the Hartswater police, including the Public Order Police unit, were monitoring the situation in Hartswater following community members’ protest action.
“No one has been arrested at this stage. We are busy clearing debris and burning tyres that community members used to barricade the road from the township leading into the Hartswater CBD,” said Tawana. The Phokwane Municipality did not respond to media enquiries.