The newly appointed mayoral committee member for community services, Anda Ntsodo, says maintenance and ensuring public facilities are not vandalised are among his top priorities.
His includes City Parks, Library and information services, and the sport, recreation and amenities department.
Mr Ntsodo, who was born and raised in Gugulethu, says in his first 100 days in office he intends to visit different community recreational sites, beaches and libraries to evaluate their condition.
The assessment visits would target the community facilities worst hit by theft and vandalism across the city and he would request security upgrades where necessary.
Some of his plans include establishing programmes to keep youth occupied and away from drugs and criminal activities.
He has already identified theft and vandalism as top challenges and intends to build strong relationships with different stakeholders to tackle them.
Asked about his plans to improve the deteriorating conditions at Monwabisi Beach adjacent to Endlovini informal settlements, he said, in the next few days he would visit the beach as it was top of his agenda.
Mr Ntsondo highlighted the lack of space for cemeteries in the province as another challenge and said he would work with the provincial human settlement department to identify suitable burial sites.
The booking procedure for halls was being undertaken differently across the city and the procedure itself had inefficiencies which needed to be addressed, he said.
Furthermore, he said, the process involved in booking of halls was confusing and there was a need to develop a clear and easy procedure, which ensured that use of the facilities was allocated inclusively and equitably.
“Nyanga sport infrastructure is a complete wreck and it needs to be refurbished. I’m driving a process of renaming the streets which were named after apartheid heroes. For the first time our lifeguards will be tested for drugs,” he said.
Mr Ntsodo told Vukani he became involved in politics at a young age and was a founding member of the Congress of South African Students (COSAS).
He previously served as DA proportional representation councillor and chairperson of the mayoral committee of the Lingelethu Town Council, and is relishing his new role.
“Before I joined the DA I was member of Pan Africanist Congress (PAC).
“But for over 10 years I was inactive as a member of PAC. I joined the DA in 2010 because I felt it was a party that was putting the interests of people first,” he said.
Mr Ntsondo holds a diploma in sales and marketing from Rosebank College and after he was appointed as PR councillor in 2012, he enrolled at the school of governance at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), the following year. He also obtained a certificate in public administration from UWC.
He says one of his short-term plans is to recruit people to be trained as lifeguards free of charge, and the programme has already been rolled out in Blue Downs.
In the long term, he wants to ensure all libraries in Mitchell’s Plain have a working internet system, as well as wi-fi connectivity.
He says the local committees which oversee the sports facilities need to be held accountable and he is pushing for the amended the Municipal Facilities Management Policy (MFMC) to be implemented. This policy is necessary for the effective support, monitoring and management of these committees, he said.
Mr Ntsodo says in the next few weeks he will officially open the newly built Kuyasa Park.
He wants councillors to visit community facilities regularly to check whether they are still in good condition – and they would be required to write reports.
Before his appointment as PR councillor he ran a cafe in Gugulethu but after numerous break-ins and robberies he closed his business and returned to politics.