Firstly, I would like to thank the residents and ratepayers who supported my nomination to the ward committee. I will do my best to represent you and work with Councilor Patuluka to find a way to solve many of the problems we face.
I have attended several subsequent meetings which are summarized below:
IDP/PMS and Annual Report Road Show, Cwili hall, January
The mayor presented the annual performance overview for the 2020-2021 financial year. According to the data presented, GKM had to deliver on 89 targets and had a 67% achievement rate. However, how these things are measured is questionable, as they have given themselves 87% for good governance and public participation, but we have had very few responses to our numerous letters and requests for meetings.
The most interesting thing out of that meeting was the fact that at the end of June 2021, GKM owed R41.7 million. However. they had outstanding debt of R90.9 million, of which R73.6 million is residential, ie non-payment of rates. This is due to the fact that many people who do not pay rates are indigent, but have not registered as such, which skews the budgeted rates. Please encourage anyone who know who cannot afford rates, to register as indigent. Contact KMRRA for the registration forms. A copy of the powerpoint for the roadshow slide show will be available here
The Demarcation Board meeting, Gxarha hall, 16 February
The Municipal Demarcation board (MDB) determines the municipal boundaries in accordance with the Municipal Demarcation Act. 1998 and other appropriate legislation enacted in terms of chapter seven of the Constitution. The MDB opened the lateset municipal boundary redeterminations process in November 2021. All stakeholders and members of the public who wish to submit proposals to determine or redetermine municipal boundaries may do so until the 31st of March 2022.
At the meeting on 16 February, the process was clearly outlined. After 31st March, there be a process of public meetings and investigations to consider all submissions. Thereafter the decision to redetermine or not will be published and there will be a period for objections to be considered.
The MDB is already in possession of a few proposals received over the last few years. These will also be considered. There is talk (rumours) of Komga becoming part of our neighboring district, Amahlathi, and the four coastal villages becoming part of Buffalo City. We do not believe that this would be in our best interest. Our aim is to see that Great Kei Municipality continues and improves. Thus, we will be submitting our own proposal that the boundaries of GKM do not change, as a counter proposals for any proposals that have already been submitted.
I will be placing a document outlining the municipal boundary redetermination is available here should anybody want to read it.
Virtual meeting with regards to way forward for caravan park
This is an ongoing process. We remain optimistic that we will find a way to improve the management and facilities of the caravan park.
ADM security audit, Cwili hall, 17 February.
The purpose of this meeting was for all stakeholders to present and discuss any possible threats to community safety in our area, which should be used to compile the IDP program for the next five years. There were representatives from the fire station, as well as SAPS and other community associations at the meeting. I was able to raise the fact that we have several safety and security issues that are not being addressed by GKM. These include fire hazards and presence of vagrants due to lack of bush clearing, cattle and goats on roads, the condition of the roads, the number of working fire hydrants. However, there was very short notice for this meeting and therefore it was not well attended. Counselor has been given an instruction to reconvene another meeting.
Geographical names change committee meeting, GKM offices Komga, 18 February
This is an ongoing process. There have been numerous interruptions to this process, hence 7 years later, it is still not resolved. GKM have been given instructions from Department of Arts and Culture to proceed with the process. The meeting was to introduce the new ward councilors and new town planner to the process and to outline the way forward. There will be a series of consultation meetings with various stakeholders, where people will be given a chance to talk and register objections. The decision to change or not will then be taken by the Department of Arts and Culture.
For Ward 5, the proposed name changes were all made in 2015 by then Councilor Mali. The name chances and meeting venue and times are as follows:
- 10 March, 10:00, Gxarha Hall for Morgan Bay to change to Gxarha:
- 10 March, 13:00, Cwili hall for Kei Mouth to change to Icwili
- 11 March, 10:00, Haga Haga library for Haga Haga to change to Haka Haka
I have attached a short form at the end of this update and urge you to complete and return to ratepayers.co.za if you have not already done so in the past. We will also be , we will also be working with representatives from Cwili, who we have consulted in the past and who also do not want the name to be changed. We will go to the meeting with copies of all previous correspondence and current objections and we can only hope that they will see reason.
I would like to say that KMRRA is not opposed to the whole name change process. Although most are uncomfortable with it, change is inevitable. In the Eastern Cape we have a number of old colonial names from English, Dutch and German origin, some of which have already been changed. I grew up in Port Elizabeth or PE, named after the wife of the then governor, Sir Rufane Donkin. I had no attachment to her and I imagine the majority of people living there had even less. Although I questioned the new name, in a short time I have become comfortable with it and can even pronounce Gqeberha.
Having said that, we see no reason for a geographical name, which is a Khoisan word to change and we will strongly oppose it. Hopefully, the powers that be will listen to the people and make sensible decisions.
Site Handover Surfacing of Kei Mouth internal streets, Cwili hall, 25 February.
This was a very positive meeting. We were introduced to the relevant staff from the consultants, MBSA Consulting, and the contractors, Muleka SA.
Phase one of this project includes 3.7 kilometers of road to be resurfaced over the next 12 months at a project cost of approximately R23.7 million. The roads to be tarred are:
- Frontier Road
- Dolphin ànd Old Fort Hill Roads
- Inniskilling Road
- Steenbras Road
In addition, Cwili Main Road with side walk and Bantubonke streets will be paved.
We pointed out that in spite of numerous requests to meet, we had not been consulted in any decisions of which roads were to be resurfaced and that the roads chosen were not necessarily the priority. It was explained that the areas and roads that were chosen to fit into the upgrading of the drainage system. This has been surveyed and the design has been updated. The next phases have already been designed and will be completed when the money becomes available. A copy of the scope of works and street maps are available here should you wish to look at them.
They are targeting 5 SMMEs that will be doing the paving. We offered our assistance to SMME’s in completing the forms as we would like to see our local SMME’s being utilized on this project. A road steering committee was formed with six members. The task of this committee is to ensure that the road construction goes ahead as planned and that the quality of the work is of high standard. I would like to thank Dave Roberts, Johan Trollip, Lynne Mundell, Andile Matutu, Nompiliso Mpambani and Siyabula Kema for volunteering to be on this committee.
KMRRA road sub committee will also be given the complete drainage design so we can work towards that while we wait for phase 2 and 3. In addition, we will be asking the contractors for any material that they do not need such as gravel that they’ve taken off the road, which we will use in our road repair programme.