The community feels the ANC should have revamped and maintained the existing infrastructure that it inherited from the previous administration
THE ANC’s move to take President Cyril Ramaphosa to Kgomotso High School instead of the community hall during the January 8 engagements has left Pampierstad community members fuming.
Residents said yesterday they felt that the dilapidated community hall situated at the entrance to Pampierstad should have been revamped instead of the community engagements being hosted at Kgomotso High.
According to the community, the decision to use the school hall was indicative of the local authority’s intention to hide the lack of service delivery in the area, adding that the Phokwane Municipality had not provided basic services for years.
They said that they were forced to sit and watch while the small town was neglected because ANC councillors were more focused on political infighting.
The community feels the ANC should have revamped and maintained the existing infrastructure that it inherited from the previous administration.
They added that not only had the dilapidated community hall been ignored but the stadium in the town was almost non-existent.
“The structure of the hall is strong and the facility can still be utilised,” they said.
The community has also complained about the condition of the roads in the area for several years.
In 2018 the town was rocked by major service delivery protests, dubbed “Help Pampierstad”.
During the week-long protests, community members planted trees in the potholes in the middle of the road.
Community member James Motsamai said yesterday that their hope of any intervention by the provincial government was fading fast.
“In the meantime the youth continue to lose themselves in drugs and criminal activities due to the lack of recreational facilities.”
Motsamai said the community’s hopes were raised in 2010 when the then Public Protector Thuli Madonsela visited Pampierstad for an oversight visit.
“Nothing came from the visit, however.”
At the time of her visit, the Public Protector urged the community to trust her office to assist in ensuring accountability by those in power and who have control over state resources.
The community referred to a statement from the Public Protector’s Office that read: “We will work with individual complainants during our investigations and revert back to report to the community before the end of November.”
The community has even lost hope in Ramaphosa, who promised during his visit last month to return before the end of this year to see the progress on development.
“We were expecting to hear of task teams being appointed and for Premier Zamani Saul to have pronounced himself on this matter. But it is still quiet and we have heard nothing.
“We are a small community that does not ask for much except renovations on the little infrastructure that we do have,” Motsamai added.
He argued that while there was no money for development, the Phokwane Municipality continued to pay the salaries of two mayors and two Speakers.
“We know that we will be told that there is no money or we have to wait for a budget when we ask for new things.”
Another community member, Sehaki Thipane, said they were disappointed that even various government departments and the municipality continued to use the Kgomotso High school hall to host events.
“That is uncalled for. What if things go wrong and the school structure gets damaged? Even political gatherings happen at the school, while we have a community hall that is abandoned.
“Even the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture used the school to host its 2019 Heritage Day event.”
Thipane stated that Phokwane Municipality’s priorities were upside down. “We are at a loss for words when it comes to the mismanagement of funds.”
He added that the leadership failed to realise that the community hall was a source of revenue for the municipality.
Phokwane Municipality spokesperson Kgalalelo Letshabo said she could not respond to requests for comment due to load shedding but will comment today.