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Business forum protests at Ivory Park development site

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Forum fears local businesses are being excluded from development project.

The Pescodia Business Forum held a protest where tree branches were set alight outside the site offices in Ivory Park on Tuesday. Pictures: Supplied

MEMBERS of the Pescodia Business Forum want to be provided with the bill of quantities and specifications for the multimillion-rand Ivory Park development in Roodepan, so that local contractors can also benefit.

The Pescodia Business Forum held a protest where tree branches were set alight outside the site offices in Ivory Park on Tuesday.

The secretary of the Pescodia Business Forum, David Kok, believed that local businesses had been excluded from the project.

Kok stated that at least 30 percent of local businesses should be employed on the R74.2 million project, where the end product would result in the construction of 1 175 houses in Ivory Park.

“The project also includes the installation of sewerage lines, water pipes and sanitation.

“We are concerned that government policies aimed at uplifting local small, medium and micro enterprises along with skills development are not being adhered to,” said Kok.

He added that they had met with the main contractor on Tuesday, where it was agreed that they would be provided with a bill of quantities on Friday.

“We will then be able to determine which tenders can be submitted by local businesses.”

The spokesperson for the Northern Cape Department of Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs, Xhanti Teki, said on Wednesday that the project only entailed the installation of civil engineering services.

“The project is not for the construction of houses. The project will provide internal basic services for 1 175 erven and will be implemented in phases. The first phase is for 280 erven at a cost of R16 million. Currently there will be no houses constructed at this stage,” said Teki.

He also stressed that houses are only provided to qualifying beneficiaries.

“The residents can go to the municipality to apply to be on the housing needs register. Please note the housing needs register is not an approval for a house.”

A media enquiry was sent to the main contractor but no response has been received yet.