KwaNobuhle residents demand their share of Uitenhage budget

Mayor promises 80% of capital spending will go to poor areas

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Photo of woman speaking at meeting
Roads in KwaNobuhle must be tarred, Asanda Mni told a budget meeting on Tuesday night. Photo: Thamsanqa Mbovane

Sanitation, running water, better roads, street lights, old age homes, sports fields: residents of KwaNobuhle in Uitenhage used a budget hearing on Tuesday night to deliver a long list of demands to the municipal authorities.

“Our streets have no lights and the roads need to be tarred,” said Asanda Mni from ward 45.

She was one of more than 500 people attending the Integrated Development Plan (IDP) meeting, called by the coalition consisting of the UDM, ANC, United Front Eastern Cape, and AIC and supported by the EFF.

The meeting was held to discuss the R1.7 billion capital budget to be implemented from 1 July 2019, across the metro’s 60 wards.

Asanda said the current R20 million roadworks project in Gunguluza was the wrong priority.

“The government is tarring the roads in that area for snakes and lizards … while we are living on gravel roads. We asked for roads since 2004.”

She said shack dwellers in area 11, needed sanitation and clean running water.

“People take human waste and throw it in nearby drains. We don’t even visit that area anymore because area 11 is stinking.”

“We also need street lights and fencing of Bucwa Cemetery.”

Vuyani Herman from ward 47, said the unemployment rate was high in KwaNobuhle. He called for a relief fund for home owners whose houses were repossessed when they lost their jobs.

He complained that the budget did not consider small businesses. “Hawkers are frying fish beside the road and when it rains, they are at risk of getting sick. Please consider SMMEs.”

Other people in the hall demanded sport facilities, old age homes, a burial fund for its families, sporting facilities renovation of RDP houses, and an end to sewage leaks across the six wards in KwaNobuhle (wards 42 to ward 47).

Council speaker Buyelwa Mafaya, said the budget was that of the previous DA-led coalition government, which was ousted in 2018.

“This budget you see in papers is not of our making.”

Mayor Mongameli Bobani promised that 80% of the capital budget would go to poor areas.

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TOPICS:  Government

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