Rage over unfinished road project

2019-05-28 06:00
Danger:Residents say an exposed cable like this could injure children.

Danger:Residents say an exposed cable like this could injure children.

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A road improvement project which sounded promising at first but was left unfinished is a great concern for the residents of Hanover Park.

They say it needs to be completed before it causes more problems. Their cars are damaged because of the humps and the small potholes. The road condition is a result of the unfinished project. Their other fear is that winter is almost here and the rains might cause havoc in the streets.

According to Jeremy Davis, a resident, it is close to a year since the contractors just vanished and left the project in a messy state; something, he says, was never communicated to them. They don’t know why the contractors vacated the site. “The mounting of our cars comes loose if you drive on a road like this,” explains Davis.

He says the ward councillor did not explain to them why the project was left incomplete. If he did, it might have been only to a small group, he says.

He adds, even if he did explain it, the matter should have been resolved by now.

Another resident who also shares the same sentiment is Shaheed Salie. His wish is for the matter to receive attention and be dealt with. Seeing that the incomplete project left the road in a poor condition, he says, it actually would have been better if the road was never even touched and should’ve been left in its old state. “We assume that maybe the road will be completed in the next financial year, but we were never told that. No one speaks to us. They only do campaigns when it is election season and you never hear from them afterwards,” he laments.

Sara Jack, another resident, says she is very unhappy with how things unfolded. “Children cannot walk bare feet when they play, residents end up walking on the road and not on the pavement because is also not finished and unsafe,” she vents.

She also agrees with her fellow community members; there was never an explanation from the authorities’ side.

Ward councillor Antonio Van Der Rheede is aware of the situation, and one of the residents say he has, on multiple occasions, tried to engage with them about the situation but it hasn’t changed. Van Der Rheede says the matter is being dealt with.

He says the City of Cape Town’s roads department is dealing with the contractor who claims they left the project incomplete because of safety challenges they (the contract workers) faced. “Like with all legal disputes it is difficult to say when the courts will complete this process,” he explains.

Davis says he was surprised to hear about these “safety challenges” as he claims he works with a group called Cease Fire who deal with gangsters. They were never told about workers who were experiencing safety issues, he says.

Felicity Purchase, Mayco member for transport, says the City is aware of the situation and is dealing with it in court.

She says there is no short-term solution possible and that procurement is a long and tedious process.

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