CHAOS at Darnall residents meeting

2015-06-03 06:00
 Photo: jyothi laldas

x Photo: jyothi laldas

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

WHAT was meant to be a peaceful meeting called by the newly formed Darnall Community Action Group (CAG) to address the matter of poor water quality with residents, turned chaotic when “uninvited guests” arrived at the meeting on Friday.

According to CAG co-chairperson Mr N Govender, who chaired the meeting, the group called the meeting to discuss the community’s concerns about the condition of water being supplied to Darnall, Zamani and surrounds. However, iLembe mayor Welcome Mdabe, director of technical services Notha Maphumulo, water manager for KwaDukuza and Ndwedwe Elias Bhengu and KwaDukuza deputy mayor Dolly Govender attended the meeting without being invited, according to Govender.

It is believed that the mayor and officials attended the meeting to clarify some of the issues that were due to be discussed.

“We intended this meeting to be just for the residents so we could tell them who we are and what we want to do as the Community Action Group and also to listen to their plight and see what we need to resolve. The main reason for the formation of the group and the meeting was to address the condition of water in the area, but we did not invite the authorities because we were not ready to engage with them.

“We did invite our ward councillor Ntsiki Pakkies, who as a resident, should have joined us and assisted with possible solutions. But we did not invite the mayor or his officials.”

He said the CAG wanted to hold a separate meeting with the authorities after the initial community meeting, following all protocol.

“With these dignitaries attending we had to give them the due respect and afford them the opportunity to speak and so we did. While Mdabe was speaking, I asked for him to pause and allow me to respond to his statements, however, he took offence and walked out of the meeting, officials in tow. The meeting then turned chaotic and had to be closed.”

He said this was not the intention of the CAG and he expressed disappointment at the mayor and officials for “gate crashing” the meeting.

He said the CAG was intent on being a peaceful community organisation that finds solutions to problems, working together with the authorities. “However, this becomes difficult when procedures are not followed.” He added that approximately one year ago Mdabe visited the area to address the water condition and was due to return six months later, but never did.

“He also told us that due to his busy schedule he was not able to come back as promised. Now that we have decided to speak up then his schedule is clear for us.” Govender then posed the question: “Why did the mayor and his officials attended the meeting when they were not invited?

“We believe this was an attempt to stifle the meeting and the CAG and we will maintain this until we learn otherwise.”

Govender said Mdabe also mentioned that R1 million will be allocated for the cleaning of the dam that supplies the water to Tongaat Hulett’s Darnall mill - which iLembe has contracted to purify the water for supply to Darnall, Zamani and surrounds.

“We want to know why iLembe will take responsibility for cleaning the dam when it was historically maintained by the mill? If it is Tongaat Hulett who owns the dam then why must rate payers money be used to clean the dam that belongs to a business?”

Another meeting will be called shortly to follow up on the abandoned meeting.

Mdabe was not able to comment at time of going to press.

Read the Stanger Weekly next week for the mayor’s response

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.