Photo of author

By Dimakatso Modipa

Residents of Ward 44 in Rustenburg at a meeting to form the Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement

The community of Ward 44 in Rustenburg has announced that it won’t be voting in the upcoming general elections on May 29.

And to show that they are earnest in their decision to boycott the elections, the residents have denounced their Ward 44 Councillor Isabel Sbongile Macone and called on her to resign with immediate effect.

Furthermore, the residents have formed their own civic organisation called the Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement which will take over all the affairs of the ward as the incumbent Councilor and his ward committee are, according to them, not capable of delivering services to the residents.

“I don’t want a Councilor’s job now or in the near future, and what I am doing now is for the love of the community, not out of any selfish interest,” said leader of the newly formed Rustenburg Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement Professor Kgaladi in an interview with Tshwane Talks on Sunday evening.

“We won’t vote in the upcoming general elections and in this regard, we are going to write a letter to the IEC informing it that it must not come to Ward 44 on 29 May,” said Kgaladi.

“We can’t vote for people who don’t recognise us,” said Kgaladi in reference to the ANC.

He moaned over the fact that Ward 44, of which he is a resident, hasn’t been included in the Integrated Development Plan ( IDP) of the Rustenburg Local Municipality for a sixth year running now.

He said there is no service delivery in Ward 44 and each time they ask about it from the Councillor and the municipality, they receive the same answer, namely that there matter shall be considered in due course, yet nothing happens afterwards.

Kgalafi says they have it on good authority that money budgeted for Ward 44 is always diverted to other wards in Rustenburg.

Kgalafi said Ward 44 consists of areas like Serutubele, Lekgalong, Mosenthal, Ikageng and Lesung and that for 20 years no service delivery whatsoever has taken place in the area.

He revealed that all along they as residents of Ward 44, have been voting for the ANC but have nothing to show for it as there is no service delivery in the area.

Leader of Rustenburg Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement Professor Kgaladi

“In case we decide to vote at a later stage, our message is that our votes are not for free, they are on sale to any party that would deliver services to our ward,” he said.

“I was at some point in time a member of the Ward Committee of this area, serving in the portfolio of Community Development, but I have since resigned as I don’t want to be associated with people who don’t deliver services to the community,” said Kgaladi vehemently.

“The Councilor and the Ward Committee take residents for granted and we want to change such an attitude,” he said.

Kgaladi said during his stint as a Ward Committee member they would always take people’s CVs and proof of residence with promises of securing employment for them (residents).

“But when the Councilor had to sign these documents, she was too lazy to do so and our efforts in this regard would come to nothing,” he said.

Kgaladi also accused Councilor Macone of not attending community meetings and in rare cases where she would attend, she won’t keep the community abreast of developments in the ward,” he said.

“Councilor Macone is an embarrassment to the ANC and the community due to her incompetence and she shouldn’t have been elected as our Councilor,” said Kgaladi.

The Ward 44 residents’ campaign to get rid of Councilor Macone started off with a meeting at the local Shalom Grounds on 11 May, where residents signed a petition expressing no confidence in her and calling on her to step down.

The petition was signed by more residents on Monday 13 May and submitted to the mayor of Rustenburg Local Municipality Sheila Mabale-Huma, as well as Council Speaker Lebogang Pule on Tuesday this week.

Kgaladi said to show that the petition to get rid of the Councilor has majority support, it was signed by over 2000 of the 3 824 residents who are eligible to vote in Ward 44.

The petition was also submitted to the Rustenburg local ANC offices and in all cases recipients of the petition were given 7 days to respond.

He said the mayor, the speaker and the ANC failed to respond as requested in the petition and the residents took a decision on Saturday 18 May to cut all ties with the ANC ward committee and the Councilor and establish the Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement to run the civic affairs of the area.

Leaders of the Rustenburg Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement

Kgaladi stressed that Ward 44 Community Empowerment Movement is not a political party, but a movement solely aimed at bringing service delivery to the ward. (PARTY) ” On Monday we are going to inform the ANC at Luthuli House and also President Cyril Ramaphosa as the head of the ANC about our decision regarding the Councilor and the Ward Committee,” said Kgaladi.

The demands listed in the petition of the Rustenburg Ward 44 residents are as follows: 1. Electricity.

2.Provision of clean water in the ward, including linkage between Ikageng and Lekgalong.

3.RDP Houses.

4.Mast Lighting Towers.

5. Infrastructure development including roads and streets with names.

6. Job creation projects.

7. Clinic, library and police station.

8. Learner ship programmes for unemployed people, students and youth

9. Proper sports and recreation facilities.

Councilor Macone had not responded to queries to this matter at the time of publication.


Leave a comment