SPECIALISTS agree that there are two things that are key to the development of any society. The first one is the development of its people individually and the second one is the development of its critical infrastructure. In terms of the Municipality’s development plan, both of these are on the list.
City Mayor Themba Njilo, speaking at a press conference recently, confirmed that the Municipality does have plans to develop critical infrastructure but some needs do emerge out of nowhere and also have to be attended to. A case in point is when a complaint was received from Ward 18 where members of the community raised the issue of pot holes that have engulfed the area. He commended Profhalt for the outstanding work that they do in fixing potholes in the city and added: “It is encouraging that while we improve the infrastructure of the City, we are also improving the skills of our people. It does not just end there as this also creates employment.”
Mr Bheki Cele, Manager in the Road & Transportation sub-unit, told Msunduzi News that they are allocated about R2- million annually in order to fix roads in the jurisdiction. He was quick to add that while this is not nearly enough for what they need to do, they will have to work with what they have.
“The challenge remains as there are a lot of areas that need to be attended to, but we trust that the company that has been identified to attend to the challenges will be able to service all the areas that have been identified and that they will carry out work that is up to the required standard,” said Sosibo.
He pointed out that an ideal budgetary allocation for the challenges they face is of about R20-million as in some areas it is not about just patching up the road as other instances required the road to be fully refurbished. “Our hope is that in the next financial year we shall get a budget allocation that will enable us to deliver on our mandate,” he said. He added that areas that will be prioritised are those from where they received most complaints and also those that have become hazardous and have caused damage to vehicles.
Mr Gerrad Lawn of the company that has been nominated to carry out the work said that they have employed infrared technology in order to carry out their work expeditiously. He also added that time is of the essence when carrying out their work and that is why they have deployed four vehicles for this purpose and that each vehicle takes about 12 minutes to patch up one pothole with six members of staff involved. In the process, they will also be training members of the community from the wards they will be servicing so that they get the required skills, which would enable them to put bread on the table as well.
“Because we understand that the work that we do is not a walk in the park, we have elected to bring our own drivers and the rest of the resources will be employed from the wards where we will be working so that we can train them, which would allow them to look for related work once we are done,” said Mr Lawn. He also said that they will see if they cannot identify some talent from the various wards to see if they cannot continue with these on other future projects.