‘City on the brink of collapse’

2019-03-07 15:56

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An online petition to save Msunduzi from collapse garnered more than 1 000 signatures — and counting — after it went viral on Wednesday.

The campaign, which was co-ordinated by Anthony Waldhausen on Wednesday, comes after Pelham residents decided that it was time they tried a different tactic to hold the municipality accountable.

“Everyone across the board is fed up and it’s frustrating to watch our City crumble right in front of our eyes,” he told The Witness.

Waldhausen is the director of the Gay and Lesbian Network.

Motivating the petition, he said Msunduzi was dysfunctional and on the brink of collapse.

He said the residents and ratepayers were seriously concerned about the continued lack of effective and efficient delivery of basic services.

Those who signed it supported the demand for the City to address and improve service delivery, and to implement the auditor-general’s recommendations on the report of 2017/18 that was tabled at council last week.

“Failing which we, the long suffering residents and ratepayers of Msunduzi, will have no alternative but, in terms of Section 139 of our national Constitution, to motivate for national and provincial intervention in the local government and management of Msunduzi, including that the council be dissolved and the municipality placed under administration.”

Meanwhile, the state of the city and the recent strikes were discussed by council at a special meeting on Wednesday.

Mayor Themba Njilo apologised to Msunduzi residents for the inconvenience caused by the illegal strikes.

He said the municipality was working hard to ensure that there were no further service delivery interruptions.

Acting municipal manager Neli Ngcobo tabled a report about what sparked the unrest and challenges in dealing with the issues raised by the disgruntled employees.

She said the City’s management was also faced with a conundrum of who to engage with as the unions representing the workers both said they had not sanctioned the waste and finance protest actions.

Ngcobo said 10 letters of intention to suspend had been issued to those who participated in the illegal strike and more notices would be sent out this week.

Job descriptions are being reviewed, starting with general assistants.

This was hoped to address the issue of grading and salary disparities that was raised by striking workers.

The process could take up to a year to complete as it will affect all the employees of the municipality.

Ngcobo said the police were also investigating cases of death threats that were made to some workers.

Due to the challenge related to producing the January invoices and statement, Ngcobo said the City would be relaxing its disconnection campaign this month.

Mabuyakhulu in Maritzburg

Mountain Rise residents will have an opportunity to engage with the KwaZulu-Natal ANC deputy chairperson Mike Mabuyakhulu on Thursday evening.

Mabuyakhulu has been invited to address an ANC’s manifesto engagement that will be held at the Eddels Club.

In the poster circulating on social media, the event was dubbed as the Msunduzi Municipality’s ratepayers meeting.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  msunduzi municipality
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