Councillors ready for new term

Councillors will have to tackle the housing crisis in their wards.

While the DA’s voters may have painted the city blue again, the ANC dominated in the 35 wards which fall into the area covered by Vukani.

And with the local government elections done and dusted, voters are now expecting those they have endorsed with an X on a ballot form, to deliver on the promises they made.

The Democratic Alliance again dominated the Western Cape, winning 66.61 percent of the vote, which gives them 154 seats in council. They are followed by the ANC, with 24 percent of the vote and 57 seats and the Economic Freedom Fighters with 3.17% and seven seats.

The picture was different, however, in Vukani’s distribution area, with voters putting their support behind the party with the black, green and gold.

But many believe the elected ward councillors will not have an easy job.

In Ward 36, long-serving councillor Depoutch Elese has been replaced by Nokuthula Bolitye.

Re-elected Ward 89 councillor Monde Nqulwana has warned the new councillors to go the people and not try to lead remotely.

“I am proud to be Ward 89’s councillor. I am still using a communal toilet. It is how you relate with people. It is a call to the incumbents to be always with their people. They must find you at your house or offices. My community is my protector. I do not need security. Those are the benefits of being with your people,” he advised.

Mr Nqulwana said as much as his party had won so many wards, he was worried about the turnout on the polls.

“It shows that there is a problem even within the party. It also shows that people are tired with rhetoric. Elections are now over, we must talk service delivery,” he said.

He said Khayelitsha is highly populated with shacks and that is a big challenge.

However, he said many people considered the provision of electricity to be the main issue and that a priority would be to encourage Eskom to engage with the City to ensure that areas were electrified.

“To me water and sanitation (are also) big challenges,” he said.

One of the returning faces is Ward 18’s Ntomboxolo Kopman who said she was happy to be given a second chance to deal with some unfinished business.

She said one of the challenges as a councillor was not getting what one wanted. She believed that the budget was not in their favour, but was adamant that the next five years would be fruitful.

“My hope for the next five years is to have a hall for Ward 18. I am going to upgrade the Site C stadium and fence two parks in Khwezi and Bongweni.

“The challenge is the temporals (temporarily relocated people) along Jafta Masemola Road and people in Taiwan. We need to get proper houses and electricity for these people,” she said.

She said with the MyCiTi route coming down Jafta Masemola, there was the possibility that some of those people would be taken away and given houses while others’ homes would be electrified.

“We all know that some are on the road reserve and wetlands, so the City cannot develop in such areas. But there is hope,” she said.

Ward 34 councillor Fikiswa Nkunzana believed she had more serious challenges than any other councillor because her ward was largely made up of informal settlements.

“Roadside shacks are giving me sleepless nights,” she said.

“There are those who are on wetlands and under electric poles. This needs to change for good. There are no services for those people. At least one area, Sheffield Informal Settlements, was electrified last year but that is not enough,” she said.

She said while many needed to be relocated to better places, she had no influence over where people were relocated to.

Ward 38 councillor Luvuyo Zondani said there were many issues to deal with but stressed the importance of education.

“Education is the key so we need to improve matric results of our children and encourage the younger ones to go to school,” he said.

He said the construction of sports facilities and the upgrade of a public park at Elikhanyisweni were in the pipeline.

Mr Zondani said he would establish Ward 38 street ambassadors, which would see three youths in each area being identified and used to get information to communities faster.

On the issue of crime, he said: “People should also know that fighting crime is not the competence of the councillor but that of national government ,” he said.

He said residents of his ward should also benefit in the 8448F housing project near Fezeka municipal offices.