Bathurst vil­lage roads lead­ing us down the wrong path

Talk of the Town - - Opinion - PETER GRIST

I WAS not at all sur­prised to see a re­sponse to my let­ter of last week but not one that ac­tu­ally, in so many words, praises the con­di­tion of the dirt roads in Bathurst vil­lage.

I prac­ti­cally fell off my stool chuck­ling in mirth.

I ques­tion what planet does Muzi Bu­daza live on? From what he writes, I as­sume he must be for­tu­nate enough to own a top-of-the-range 4x4 and there­fore glides over the deep holes, deep rut­ted ar­eas and blithely plunges into the deep muddy pools which sur­round the ar­eas where the Bathurst stream crosses the dirt roads.

As I have pre­vi­ously men­tioned, the ma­jor­ity of the vil­lage roads are in an ap­palling state. Bro­ken springs, bro­ken shock ab­sorbers, bro­ken tie rod ends and worn out rub­bers. Rims get dam­aged and the wheel align­ment all shot to hell.

One’s av­er­age fam­ily-type ve­hi­cle starts to rat­tle like a stone in a tin can. Charm­ing I don’t think, and all quite un­nec­es­sar­ily forced upon us by, and I re­peat again, a cor­rupt and ba­si­cally un­car­ing and use­less mu­nic­i­pal­ity. What do we pay ex­pen­sive high, most un­af­ford­able rates, for Muzi? For the mu­nic­i­pal­ity to put in their pock­ets? That can’t be right.

When did you last visit the town­ship, Muzi? Let me take you on a tour in order to show you all the paved roads within the town­ships of Nolukhanyo and Free­stone. It may open your eyes. I can also drive you into the town­ship on paved roads. Name one road in Bathurst vil­lage which has been paved? Bet you can’t, and Pussy Foot Lane doesn’t count, be­ing that it just leads di­rectly to the town­ship.

You are quite right in say­ing that Bathurst is a ru­ral town (vil­lage ac­tu­ally) and that one would ex­pect to have marginally poorer con­di­tion roads in a vil­lage. How­ever this is no ex­cuse for prac­ti­cally the to­tal ab­sence of even rudi­men­tary main­te­nance on the vil­lage roads. I do not know where you live, but along my road de­pend­ing on the season, we ei­ther have our houses cov­ered in dust by 4x4s belt­ing past or al­ter­na­tively, fol­low­ing heavy rains, so much deep mud and runoffs and deep gul­lies.

You know, Muzi, not all that long ago I could not even leave my house to go and do some es­sen­tial shop­ping be­cause there was a sink­hole right out­side my gate.

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