Local community in dire straits

2018-07-20 06:00

COMMUNITY members of Ward 8 in Sihoyini Village, in Umzimkhulu, said they cast their votes in 1994 with the hope of a better future but, to this day, their lives have not improved.

This community has to obtain water from a nearby stream, which puts them at risk of coming into contact with infections and diseases.

Community member Xolani Ndlozini, who has been living in the village for more than 40 years, said people endure an inferior quality of life.

He said he was 19-years-old when the country entered into the new democratic era, in 1994, when he voted for the first time.

“When I cast my first vote in 1994, there was hope of a better future in our village. But we still use wood to make fire and get water from streams which animals also drink from,” said Ndlozini.

He said 20 villagers met with Umzimkhulu Municipality officials with the purpose of getting answers about water and electricity in 2015.

A few days after the meeting, the community saw electricity poles being put up in the village however these were later taken to other villages.

He said schools make use of water tanks to get water.

Another villager said some people depend on rainfall to get water and during dry seasons, like winter, they find themselves struggling for the basic commodity.

Harry Gwala District Municipal spokesperson Ndabezitha Tenza said the municipality is aware of water shortages in the area. He said they are busy planning for immediate intervention.

With regard to the electricity shortage, Umzimkhulu Municipality municipal spokesperson Willie Mgcina said he will respond to the situation next week, stating that a meeting with a ward councillor from Mfulamhle village was convened this week after community members from Mfulamhle embarked on a protest, also over an electricity shortage.

“As the municipality, we would like to caution everyone who embarks on protest action to refrain from destroying government infrastructure,” said Mgcina.

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