‘Destruction won’t be tolerated’

2018-01-24 06:01
From the left are George Mosimane, mayoral spokesperson, cllr. Paul Kock, cllr. Mangaliso Matika (Sol Plaatje mayor) and cllr. Charles Ngoma during a special media briefing that was convened following violent protests in Lerato Park. Photo: Christiaan Cloete

From the left are George Mosimane, mayoral spokesperson, cllr. Paul Kock, cllr. Mangaliso Matika (Sol Plaatje mayor) and cllr. Charles Ngoma during a special media briefing that was convened following violent protests in Lerato Park. Photo: Christiaan Cloete

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The executive mayor of the Sol Plaatje Municipality, Cllr. Mangaliso Matika, on Friday (19/01) issued a stern warning to “individuals seeking to hold the community for ­ransom and who try to destabilise the community”.

Matika spoke at a special press briefing that was convened following violent protests in Lerato Park in Galeshewe, which later also spread to the John Daka area.

Express Northern Cape reported last week how residents of Lerato Park shut down the main road from Barkly West in anger over a lack of basic services and housing.

The residents want answers as to when the process of putting them in straight lines will start in order for them to get basic services.

“Communities also need to understand that everything needs to be done within the ambit of the law.

“Destruction and crimes won’t be tolerated at all and we will proceed with our application to interdict, mainly to protect property and to ensure that no unlawful occupation of land takes place,” said Matika.

He also said that the council was taking the necessary steps to ensure the safety of councillors after threats had been made.

Matika warned that there would be acted against those who destroy municipal property and threaten the well-being of society.

He reiterated that the Sol Plaatje Municipality was committed to resolving service delivery issues as mandated by the electorate.

He assured the community that the municipality would be engaging with community members within a reasonable time, but only once the situation had stabilsed.

“We want to normalise the situation so we can hear what (concerns) the committees are raising.”

Matika suggested during Friday’s press briefing that while some profess service delivery to be the root cause of protests, internal issues within the ANC were actually at play.

“Some of the protestors made it clear that they were rejecting the outcome of the ANC’s regional conference and they still recognised the former chair as their chairperson.

“We are asking ourselves whether these actions have anything to do with service delivery.

“Issues of the ANC will not be entertained, because our mandate is service delivery and if there is any issue they may have, they must take it up with the regional offices of the ANC.

“We cannot respond on behalf of the ANC on the level office of the ANC.”

According to Matika, the municipality has already met with security agencies and police about the current situation and communicated to them that all the activities were solely aimed at trying to reverse the gains of the past year.

Matika also emphasised during the press briefing that Lerato Park was a presidential project and that while the Sol Plaatje Municipality owned the land, the entire development that is taking place was coordinated by the president’s office.

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