Row over vegetable gardens money
HALF a million rand earmarked for vegetable gardens in Khayelitsha has three years later translated not into rows of nutritious greens but a major row over where the money went.
And there are allegations that other funds have also been diverted from development in the area.
The Khayelitsha Development Forum unveiled its blueprint for a household garden project at a summit on food security in 2013 and the following year received R559 770 for the project from the National Development Agency.
The funds were intended to support the Khayelitsha community in setting up vegetable gardens and educating people about farming. The gardens were to be established in all 13 Khayelitsha wards and directly benefit 200 households. That did not happen. This week the KDF’s chairman, Ndithini Tyhido, confirmed the NDA money had not gone into gardens. He said more than R270 000 was spent on settling a hotel bill the forum had incurred when members attended a conference in Citrusdal.
“The funds were garnished by the courts (to settle the hotel debt),” Tyhido said.
He said the rest of the NDA grant was used to pay for a plenary meeting that took place at the Ritz hotel in Sea Point.
Dissatisfied members of the forum, who’ve scrutinised the forum’s bank statements dating back to early 2013, have highlighted what they claim are illicit transactions. However, Tyhido has denied there was evidence of graft.
Tyhido said the forum had offered to “formulate a committee which would investigate these allegations based on set terms of reference set out by the committee”.
Councillor Patrick Mngxunyeni has been tasked by the forum plenary, which consists of the township’s religious groups, non- governmental organisations, Sanco and political parties in the area, to conduct a probe.
Yellow balloons outside the church in Edgemead at the funeral of Kyle Grace, 12, who died in an accident at his school.