Res­i­dents tell city what is needed

Sug­gest pri­or­i­ties for the next five years

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - YAZEED KAMAL­DIEN

AS CITY of­fi­cials pre­pare the next in­te­grated devel­op­ment plan (IDP), a five-year strat­egy with bud­get pri­or­i­ties, lo­cals have the right to of­fer in­put on how their taxes are spent.

The City of Cape Town re­cently held a num­ber of pub­lic par­tic­i­pa­tion meet­ings to hear from the pub­lic what should be pri­ori­tised for the 2017 to 2022 IDP.

An on­line sur­vey was also im­ple­mented, run­ning un­til ear­lier this week.

It asked lo­cals to se­lect their top two pri­or­i­ties “for mak­ing Cape Town a more suc­cess­ful city”.

Among these were a re­li­able and ef­fi­cient trans­port sys­tem, an en­vi­ron­ment that cre­ates jobs, build­ing more in­te­grated com­mu­ni­ties and us­ing dig­i­tal tech­nol­ogy to ad­vance the city.

The sur­vey also fo­cused on how Cape Town could build its “im­age as the place to do busi­ness”.

Res­i­dents were asked to se­lect from op­tions on how the city could achieve this goal.

These op­tions in­cluded in­vest­ing in skills the econ­omy needs, cre­at­ing work op­por­tu­ni­ties for young peo­ple, en­hanc­ing the city’s dig­i­tal in­fra­struc­ture and mak­ing Cape Town more en­ergy-se­cure.

Dur­ing the last IDP pe­riod, the city spent cash on rolling out free wire­less in­ter­net ac­cess in pub­lic spaces and en­cour­ag­ing lo­cal en­ergy sup­pli­ers to counter power cuts from na­tional elec­tric­ity sup­plier Eskom.

Other sur­vey ques­tions fo­cused on how city of­fi­cials could make Cape Town an “in­creas­ingly safe city”, and “even more of a car­ing city”.

Week­end Ar­gus spoke to peo­ple in var­i­ous parts of the city to gauge what they are con­cerned about and crime, home­less­ness, un­em­ploy­ment, health care and pub­lic trans­port emerged as pri­or­i­ties.

lives in Khayelit­sha and works with non- profit group Box Girls, which em­pow­ers young women through box­ing.

“Our girls who are at pri­mary school have home­work but we don’t have enough tu­tors who can help them with that. There are girls whose par­ents didn’t even go to school so they can’t help their chil­dren.

“We need a big­ger or ren­o­vated li­brary in our area as well. We hold our home­work clubs in the li­brary but it’s too small. We have 150 girls or more ev­ery Satur­day com­ing to as­sist each other.”

She also wants to see a park with an out­side gym.

“We need youth cen­tres where young peo­ple can meet in­stead of just sit­ting at home or get­ting in­volved in drugs or al­co­hol. They get bored.

“We need to get young peo­ple in our area in­volved in projects that are pos­i­tive and help build their lives.”

an un­em­ployed mother of four chil­dren, has one grand­daugh­ter and lives in Mitchells Plain.

Her fo­cus was on pub­lic health.

“The staff at the clinic and hos­pi­tal need to learn how to re­late and com­mu­ni­cate with peo­ple. El­derly peo­ple sit for hours at the day hos­pi­tal wait­ing for help. The staff don’t help peo­ple.

“I don’t know if they are un­der­staffed but they have a ridicu­lous at­ti­tude. They have no pa­tience or em­pa­thy with peo­ple.”

She was also con­cerned about safety in Mitchells Plain.

“We need po­lice, es­pe­cially at bus stops. Women stand wait­ing for a bus in fear of what can hap­pen to them.

“Po­lice also need to be more ac­tive on the week­ends when crime goes up. The crime is so bad we live in para­noia. You don’t know when you will hear an­other gun­shot.”

Parks for chil­dren were also not safe, she said.

“Peo­ple drink al­co­hol and do drugs in the parks. Where must our chil­dren play? The city can do youth train­ing pro­grammes for peo­ple in our area. Young peo­ple are all just sit­ting at home be­com­ing drug ad­dicts or end up in jail.”

works as a su­per­vi­sor at a chain store in Canal Walk and lives with her mother in Mitchells Plain.

She said she used pub­lic trans­port ev­ery day and it needed to be im­proved.

“We don’t have MyCiTi bus stops near our house so I take three taxis ev­ery day to get to work. It’s not con­ve­nient.

“I have to leave home 4.30am to get to work by 8am.”

The city also needed to help par­ents who couldn’t af­ford to pay school fees.

“In our area, you see many young chil­dren run­ning around in­stead of go­ing to school.

We have lived in this house for 16 years and I haven’t seen any im­prove­ments in our area.

“And we don’t even see any po­lice in the area.”

lives in Gar­dens and works as an in­te­rior ar­chi­tect in cen­tral Cape Town.

“I walk to work ev­ery day and I no­tice, es­pe­cially on Kloof Street, there are a lot of home­less peo­ple and beg­gars. Some­thing needs to be done about that. The city needs to help peo­ple.

“When I walk home, es­pe­cially, there are at least three peo­ple ask­ing for money, food or clothes.”

O’Shea was also con­cerned about con­ges­tion in the city, and the park­ing short­age.

“The city is very con­gested and it’s get­ting worse. It seems like more and more peo­ple are mov­ing to the city cen­tre.

If the city had a bi­cy­cle ren­tal pro­ject then fewer peo­ple would drive cars.”

Crime and mug­gings in the city and sur­round­ing ar­eas were also be­com­ing the norm.

“My cousin was mugged and her friend’s fin­ger was bro­ken when they were at­tacked. Her bag and phone was stolen. The city should pri­ori­tise crime.”

is a pro­ject man­ager for non-profit Awqaf SA and lives in Ry­lands.

“Ry­lands is a hotspot for crime. We need more vis­i­ble polic­ing in our area. The po­lice seem un­der-re­sourced.

“The city also needs to im­prove the lo­cal clinic. It needs a per­ma­nent man­ager in­stead of a new man­ager ev­ery few months. It’s get­ting worse. The staff are re­ally rude and they seem dis­con­tented at work.”

Ab­dul­lah also sug­gested the city in­tro­duce ed­u­ca­tional pro­grammes for peo­ple need­ing fi­nan­cial ad­vice.

“They need this now es­pe­cially dur­ing the fes­tive sea­son be­cause there are many loan sharks and peo­ple are mak­ing debt.”

The MyCiTi bus ser­vice should also be ex­tended to Klip­fontein Road, and the Athlone Sta­dium should be re­vamped so more events could be hosted there.

“It would be good if the city coun­cil could also have a bud­get to fix its own build­ings. We work in town­ships where peo­ple use coun­cil build­ings and they are in a bad state,” Ab­dul­lah said.

yazeed.kamal­dien@inl.co.za

PIC­TURES: YAZEED KAMAL­DIEN

Andiswa Madikane lives in Khayelit­sha, where she wants city of­fi­cials to in­vest more in venues for youth sports.

Fatiema Bara­dien-Khan lives with her daugh­ters Aqeefah and Aqee­lah in Mitchells Plain. They want city of­fi­cials to spend money on im­prov­ing health ser­vices, polic­ing and pub­lic trans­port.

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