From the news desk

Bonteheuwel residents bemoans council development

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Members of the Bontheuwel community met on Monday morning to hand over a memorandum to the City of Cape Town councillor, Rosemary Rau, to express their dissatisfaction with the erection of what they call “alien looking poles” in their community. Residents on Saturday held a meeting in which a plan of action was adopted in order to voice the grievances with the proposed development in their area.

“We as a community decided that we need to act and we need to act today,” says Judy Kennedy, the chairperson of the Joint Peace Forum.

There seems to be some confusion amongst residents with regards to poles being put up in their community. Some were told that it is electricity poles whilst others have no information on it.

At Saturday’s meeting, residents vowed to physically remove these poles, stop the contractors from proceeding with the digging of trenches and to demand that the project be ceased immediately.

“We want to know what the purpose of it is. The workmanship is very shoddy, nobody knows what it’s for and who it is for because they didn’t consult us,” Kennedy said.

“As much as we want electricity we don’t want these monstrosities in front of people’s houses”.

Nadia Mayman, a resident in Bontheuwel, said members of the community weren’t consulted on the building plans in the community. She alluded to rumours that millions is being spent on this project. She believes the money could have been spent on the development of youth and of the area.

“We want development in our area but at what costs. Our place will look like a slum at the end of the day and if our place looks like a slum then people will start behaving in an unruly manner,” Mayman explained.

Kennedy says that the building workman on the project have been threatened because people are frustrated with the work being done.

“The poles in one instance was places in front of someone’s drive way and people are angry about it and they want to take it out on the workers and that is not what we want,” Kennedy continued.

Residents proceeded to walk to the council building in Bonteheuwel after meeting at the bus terminal in order to hand over a memorandum to the councillor.

“The memorandum basically states our dissatisfaction with the process that was followed and how residents have threatened to act on their own if they do not get answers,” Mayman explained.

Another member of the community agree who joined in to show her solidarity with the community’s action said that the council should first consult with the community before work can begin.

VOC News is still awaiting a response from the councillor. VOC (Umarah Hartley)

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1 comment

  1. After reading this article I can’t help but to ask the following questions? how many community members was in the meeting on Saturday when based on the photo they could not master 50people to hand over a memorandum? bonteheuwel have a population of over 55thousand people and based on that amount, who is the JPF speaking for? are they really caring about te community when bonteheuwel still on a daily basis have gun fire ringing our air space and they who stand for peace have a March that looked most illegal for they had no accompany of any police or law enforcement. I also find it hard to believe that those who live by the poles are not aware of its purpose cause the contractors have clo ‘s to communicate with the community. I cannot understand why Nadia pose as a community member when she is a member (executive) of te JPF. I can understand why Judy jumped at this opportunity cause it’s clear she is an ANC member and they doing everything in their power to attempt to delay service to the community.
    I think it’s time your reporters start following the official Bonteheuwel page and notice the purpose of he JPF who use community ideas and issues and pilot it as JPF projects.
    the bring about of this March was an idea from a community person who drew up a petition to have the project stopped. the JPF then took the idea and turned it into their own project. I also believe that electrification processes is essential and cannot agree that those funds must be used for youth development. I feel that this people who lead this March need to educate themselves for what is the purpose of fighting crime when you cannot do things within the law. as a community member of Bonteheuwel I also don’t agree with the poles and contacted the councillor who informed me last week that they in process of putting a hold on the planting of poles and will conduct meetings to solve the issues. If I could get hold of her, what was the reason for the JPF not getting hold of her? I’m wondering, did they even try?

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