Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Pretoria Township Residents Complain of Filthy Conditions

Sthembiso Sithole

Children forced to play in filth as open spaces become
rubbish dumps.
As South Africa is electing local leaders in a week’s time political parties are trying to convince the public on many reasons they feel they need to be voted for and some even doing damage control on the promises they have failed to deliver on in the past. We have seen the Democtatic Alliance and the African National Congress removing fighting gloves on issues of open toilets in certain municipalities and in Kliptown, Soweto, residents have complained of still being forced to use the bucket system while they live without adequate electricity supply.

In Soshanguve residents are now complaining of having to live in filth in the ANC run township and even ANC members say they have taken their leaders to task about the matter, but there have been no positive responses. The DA, previously known by many as a white party, has been seen campaigning here as well.

Soshanguve community member Marves Nemadebene says the garbage has created a massive problem in the township’s Block MM where she lives. “Dirt is affecting many families and children in this area. Dogs are dumped next to where we stay. I have tried to call the municipality to collect rubbish but nothing was done. I am tired now,” she says.

This is just one of the problems that might lead to her staying away from the polls. Nemadebene highlights other problems that have not been fixed in Block MM. “There is no street tar, [there are no] schools and crèches for our children to go to. They travel long distances to get to school and transport is expensive.”

Some residents have taken to clean the streets themselves.

“We clean for ourselves and burn rubbish. Councillor Maluleka who stays in block XX has done nothing about this rubbish,” explains Block XX community member Eunice Mapama.

Some of those complaining about the lack of rubbish collection in the area proudly say they are members of the ANC which is tasked with taking care of services in the township.

“The big problem is there are no dust bins and rubbish bags. We cannot reach structures to help us but as ANC we will do our best,” says ANC member Rose Moagi.

Emmanuel Mononya is one of the children who is affected by this dumped rubbish in the area. “This dirt is affecting us, because the wind blow and we get a bad smell. We hardly have a place to play in.”

Soshanguve South African Civic Organisation (SANCO) Chairperson and ANC member, Samuel Tshabalala, says such conditions are not new to residents.

“I speak on behalf of the community. We are used to this. We are told to get used to it. You go and complain to the office the answer you get is, we won’t be able to collect that rubbish,” explains Tshabalala.

Residents say they are tired of going to the polls to elect leaders who neglect them. The political playing field seems to have opened up in Soshanguve as the Democratic Alliance has been seen here telling people to change the party that governs the township.

1 comment:

  1. It's about time the political parties delivered. Thanks for this article, well written and true.