Nothing beats getting the job right the first time

2014-11-24 00:00

Save the


… Of getting a thumbs down and do your job properly the first time round. This is the message to errant municipal officials who ­repeatedly ignored requests to sort out two problems. In the end, their senior supervisors have to step in.

This is what happened to city ­businessman Kay Makan and his staff. They got fed up with reporting an uncovered manhole outside their business premises in Victoria Road. The situation was dire because ­vehicles were getting damaged.

Makan said a trench that was dug up was left uncovered before being sorted out. However, the manhole alongside this repaired trench ­continued to be left uncovered.

“The fault was reported to the ­municipality. Furthermore, an ­employee at the roads department ­allegedly did not even know what a manhole cover was.

“Several cars have been badly damaged after driving into this ­uncovered manhole. It seems as though nobody cares,” Makan said.

Witness Warriors reported the problem to a senior municipal ­official and it was sorted out that same day.


Two lo ng-

standing problems

Mrs Magubane from the Grange had to contend with two long-standing problems — ­electricity contractors who had dug up and messed up her yard, and an incorrect pre-paid meter installed at her house. The problem was that the meter was in the name of a Mr Majola and had a different address. She had been trying to sort this out since ­September last year and has been sent from pillar to post.

The last time she called at the ­electricity department, she was told to leave her details with one of the staffers, which she did, but never heard from them. In the meantime she ­continued to buy electricity vouchers as Mr Majola.

A senior official at electricity, Simphiwe Mchunu, has since visited Magubane and began the process of sorting out her yard. He said a cable would have to be re-routed and he had already arranged for a contractor to do this and will ensure the work is neatly done. He organised for her meter to be replaced and saw that the tokens that had been had bought were credited to the new meter.

Mchunu went further and ­apologised to Magubane on behalf of Msunduzi Municipality. He said the matters raised by the unhappy householder has been raised with the employees and contractors mentioned in her complaint.

Magubane wrote to thank Witness Warriors for intervening. “You were my last resort and it looks like ­contacting you has paid off,” she said.

Good advice

Howard Richardson, a retired engineer and resident of World’s View in Hilton, wrote: “I have had to drive up Old Howick Road (R103) from ­Pietermaritzburg recently on several occasions, often at night when it was raining and very misty. Visibility at times was less than 20 m.

“In these conditions, it is almost impossible to define the road ­margins or the centre line as the road markings are indistinct and there are no cat’s eyes whatsoever.

“In addition, there are ‘speed bumps’ near the junction of Celtis Road which are entirely ineffective. A recent tragic accident in this area was obviously caused by excessive speed which was exacerbated by the ineffectiveness of the ‘speed bumps’.

“I note that a section of the R103 passing through Hilton has been fitted with fluorescent cat’s eyes which are extremely effective,” Richardson said.

He asked that similar cat’s eyes be fitted along the R103; that the road markings get sorted out and this time with reflective paint. Richardson urged that the speed bumps near the Celtis Road junction be made more effective.

Msunduzi Municipality responded: “Old Howick Road is in our road markings work schedule for this month. It will be painted before the end of November from Athlone ­traffic circle up to Celtis Road where the municipality boundary ends.”

Witness Warriors is pursing the matter of the Celtis Road speed humps with the uMngeni ­Municipality.

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