Archive for the ‘Humansdorp’ Category

DA pressure leads to upgrades at Humansdorp Court

October 15, 2021

After 15 years of false starts and broken promises, the residents of Humansdorp will finally have a functional and decent court precinct to attend to their legal requirements.

This follows numerous oversight inspections and enquiries over the years from various members of the Democratic Alliance (DA).

“Following my oversight inspection at the court on 13 October 2020, I submitted a detailed report on the issues being faced by the staff and public at the existing court precinct and urged the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure to speed up their processes to ensure that construction could begin as soon as possible,” said Samantha Graham-Maré, MP – DA Shadow Minister for Public Works.

Parliamentary questions were also submitted to ascertain what would be done to address the most pressing concerns.

“Security and ablutions are two of the most urgent concerns we raised in our reports and parliamentary questions.

There are a large number of female personnel on the site, and there have been various incidents where members of the public and staff have been attacked due to a lack of security infrastructure and personnel.

The toilet facilities were an abomination with no facilities whatsoever for female members of the public. The toilets in the holding cells are appalling, and there are no toilets in the overflow area used to house females and juveniles when the main holding cells are full,” said Graham-Mare.

“The holding cells themselves are woefully insufficient, both from a capacity point of view and a security perspective. Members of the public can freely gain access to these cells.

The lack of proper space for the administration of the courts means piles of dockets stored in passages and on the floors of offices.

There are no offices or areas where lawyers can confer with their clients, and the seating and waiting areas for people required to attend court are almost non-existent.

There is only one broken chair for the people attending court on maintenance issues, which stands out in the open. People deserve to be treated better than this.

Finally, there is light at the end of the tunnel, and the Democratic Alliance is extremely pleased to note that there has been site establishment by the appointed contractor on the premises to begin the renovations.

Cllr Hennie Britz, who has been driving this issue for years, and I will be monitoring the progress of the build closely to ensure that nothing prevents this project from being completed on time and within budget.

Persistence pays, and only the DA has been pushing for the renovations of the Humansdorp Magistrate Court because it is only the DA that gets things done,” concluded Graham-Mare.

Gravel roads being upgraded in Kouga

September 28, 2021

The DA led Kouga Municipality officially launched the tarring of the first gravel road, Koerat Street, in Humansdorp on Friday, September 17 – a first in over 20 years.

Construction of the 1km road, estimated to be completed by the end of the month, is set at close to R2 million.

“I am absolutely proud of this historic moment – the first gravel road to be tarred in the region in over 20 years,” said Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks. “And it is only the first of many gravel roads to be tarred across the region.

He said roads provides access to livelihoods and support economic development. “Roads represent progress. It provides a visible buffer against economic decline.”

Several local SMMEs will, furthermore, benefit during the construction phase.

According to Hendricks, the tarring of the road – previously known as Rooilyn Street – is dedicated to the first families who lived there: Marais, Scheepers, Matodlana, Booysens and Claassens.

One of the oldest residents in the street, Meisie Laetitia Sheila (68) who has been living in Koerat Street since birth, is elated that the road will be tarred. “I am overjoyed that the road will be tarred after all these years – indeed a day for the history books,” she said.

Hendricks said, “Some R10 million had been budgeted for the tarring of gravel roads in the current financial year – the entrance to Golf Course in KwaNomzamo and Mentoor Street in Kruisfontein.

“An additional R20 million will be spent on the tarring of gravel roads in the 2022/ 2023 and 2023/ 2024 financial years.”

Bush Clearing to keep Humansdorp safe

April 29, 2021

Major bush-clearing is under way at Humansdorp in a joint effort to keep Kouga communities clean safe from crime – and to support local small, medium, and micro-enterprises (SMMEs).

This comprehensive project, spearheaded by Kouga Municipality’s Local Economic Development Department and Community Service Department, forms an integral part of the municipality’s Keep Kouga Safe and Keep Kouga Clean campaigns. 

Theodore Plaatjies from Vernon Blessings SMME (left) and Jo-Wayne Felix from SAMFIX SMME (right) receive bush-clearing equipment from Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks (second from left) and Kouga Public Participation Coordinator, Eugene Goliath (second from right).

Over 25 locally based SMMEs, who are registered on the municipality’s data base with clear compliance, will be used in the ongoing project.

Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, said two SMMEs from Humansdorp and Hankey respectively had started clearing alien vegetation in crime hotspots in April this year.

The first two SMMEs to receive their equipment are Samfix and Vernon Blessings.

They each received chain saws, tool kits, brush cutters, rakes and personal protective equipment, including helmets, gloves, jackets and goggles.

“The areas they are currently focusing on includes the open spaces in Kruisfontein, Panorama, Arcadia and Boskloof,” he said. “These areas are very bushy, which provides the ideal cover for criminals who have been targeting pedestrians on their way to or from work, town and schools.

“It, furthermore, improves the safety of people in the vicinity by reducing the risk of fires breaking out.

“The project will soon be expanded to other areas across Kouga.”

According to Hendricks, bush-clearing is among the strategies the municipality would be pursuing to help make Kouga the safest region in South Africa. “Projects like these are essential if we are to achieve this goal.”

He thanked Kouga Municipality’s Local Economic Development Department and Community Service Department for taking hands to bring the bush-clearing and job creation project to fruition – creating much-needed business growth.

The Local Economic Development Department provided the financial resources for registration support, health and safety training, equipment, and local bush clearing projects.

“Also in the pipeline is a Business Support Centre in Ocean View – a one-stop shop where SMMEs can be assisted with services such as business registration, IT services, and training,” said Hendricks. 

“It has come to our attention that our SMMEs are struggling to get these services, therefore the municipality has secured R300 000 in its Capital Budget for the roll-out of the programme.

“The aim is also to create job opportunities for local SMMEs during the renovation phase of the centre.”

According to Hendricks, the process has already commenced with designs to be submitted to the Portfolio Committee for approval.

Mayor Hendricks responds to radio attacks

September 17, 2020

Kouga Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks has issued the following statement following a spate of attacks against the municipality by Kouga FM:

Kouga Municipality is in the process of applying for an eviction order to have Kouga FM removed from the Kouga Cultural Centre in Humansdorp.

The radio station has tried to paint a skewed picture of the reason for this, even going as far as accusing the municipality of trying to gag them.

The facts, however, are quite simple:

Kouga FM’s lease agreement has expired. They are also behind with their municipal account payments. They are, in essence, occupying the building illegally and free-loading.

The municipality first tried to meet with the station manager, but the invitation was ignored.

The municipality then issued the radio station with a month’s notice to vacate the premises towards the end of 2019.

Kouga FM requested an extension. The municipality granted their request and gave them a further three months. The radio station failed to meet this deadline, hence, the current application for an eviction order.

It is unfortunate that the station manager has responded to this legal process with slanderous attacks.

It is also unfortunate that he keeps on insinuating that there is mismanagement at the municipality. Yet, during my almost three years as Mayor, we have never received a single request for comment from Kouga FM about any alleged wrong-doing.

Surely, an ethical and professional radio station would ask for comment and try to determine the facts before airing gossip.

Kouga FM’s failure to do so exposes their attacks for what they are – malicious attempts at getting back at the municipality for refusing to fund the daily operations of the radio station. Broadcasting and radio stations are, however, not a core function of municipalities and our funding has to be prioritized for basic service delivery.

I would like to invite the station manager to do as media professionals do. If there is evidence of mismanagement, please share it and give the municipality the opportunity to respond as any ethical and responsible journalist would do.

As matters stand, you are not giving your listeners verified information. You are feeding them self-serving gossip. Media freedom is not an excuse to lead your listeners astray.

The municipality in no way intends on quieting the voice of a radio station but rather to manage its immovable assets in a more efficient and effective manner as a responsible governing party

The station manager is irresponsible, reckless in his comments and biased.

The municipality is in possession of an evidence file regarding allegations of mismanagement and corruption against the station manager. This file was submitted to ICASA in December 2019 and we are awaiting feedback.

Hundred families powered up at Donkerhoek

July 24, 2020

100 families at Donkerhoek in Humansdorp received first-time access to electricity this week.

Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, switched on the power to 100 new electrical connections at the settlement on Tuesday.

Hendricks said the project represented another step forward for communities that for years were neglected by the municipality’s past leaders.

“There are still many improvements that we would like to make to this area, including additional standpipes and toilets,” he said, addressing residents of the area.

“We want to thank those living here for their patience and cooperation. You have not been forgotten and we are committed to helping you move forward as the municipality moves forward.”

Planning and Development Portfolio Councillor, Ben Rheeder, said the beneficiaries were families who had been relocated from Vaaldam to Donkerhoek, so as to enable the municipality to roll out basic services to them.

“Priority was given to the elderly, disabled and most vulnerable,” he said.

The switch-on brings the total number of sub-economic houses and sites to be electrified in Humansdorp over the past four years to 797.

This has included the 391 RDP houses built at Kruisfontein, as well as a further 306 sites at Donkerhoek.

“More than R23 million has been put into these projects, including the necessary bulk infrastructure,” Hendricks said.

“A further 100 connections are set to be installed in the current financial year.”

Chemical toilets have also been installed at the new section of Donkerhoek.

The residents have named this new settlement Mooi Uitsig (“Fair View”) – in recognition of both the beautiful views from the area and their hope for a brighter future.

The residents have been relocated to Mooi Uitsig from the Vaaldam area so as to enable the municipalty to provide basic services to them.

New Covid-19 case in Humansdorp

May 18, 2020

The Kouga region has a new case of Covid-19 after a Humansdorp woman, who works at FNB, tested postive.

While the patient resides in Humansdorp, she has family members in Jeffreys Bay who have also since been tested.

The number of positive cases in Kouga now stands at 11, with nine of these having recovered.

There is still one active case in Hankey.

“The FNB branch in Humansdorp was closed on Friday and the building has been sanitised and will remain closed until further notice,”‘ said Kouga Mayor Horatio Hendricks.

“The Department of Health is busy with tracking and tracing of all known contacts of the patient. There are three contacts who live in Wavecrest, Jeffreys Bay who have all been tested.

Two of the tests have come back as negative and we waiting the results of the third test,” added Hendricks.

Hendricks encouraged residents of the Municipality to keep their guards up to protect themselves as well as their loved ones as the number of new cases soared by 1 160 to a total of 15 515.

460 873 tests have been conducted with 21 314 done in the last 24 hour cycle.

Sound boost for Humansdorp play school

February 20, 2020

THE Kate Van Der Merwe Crèche in Gill Marcus, Humansdorp, received a sound system through the DA led Kouga municipality’s Ward Development Fund this week.

Kouga Speaker Hattingh Bornman said the donation included a speaker, with a microphone, bluetooth or USB input and various other functions.

“The Kate Van Der Merwe Crèche has been running successfully since 1997. The sound system will be used for school concerts and the modeling shows the school has become known for,” said ward councillor Wilma Coenraad.

“The donation will help boost the school’s events and will greatly enhance the children’s experience in these activities.

Coenraad joined teachers and pupils on Tuesday to hand over the donation.

Humansdorp water reservoirs running low

December 6, 2019

Due to the loadshedding yesterday, the levels of Humansdorp’s water reservoirs are very low this morning.

As a result, water shortages might occur in high-lying areas while the water pressure throughout the town is low.

The municipality has brought in generators so as to ensure water continues to be pumped into the reservoirs during the loadshedding period scheduled for later today.

Residents are asked to use water sparingly in the meantime to allow the reservoirs to fill up sufficiently for water to be available to all areas of the town.

Our sincere apologies for any inconvenience.

Water supply to Boskloof to be interrupted

August 5, 2019

The water supply to Boskloof in Humansdorp will be interrupted periodically from August 5 to 16 to allow for the activation of the newly-installed main line.

Kouga Infrastructure and Engineering Portfolio Councillor Freddy Campher said the longest interruption will take place on Wednesday, August 7, when a pressure relief valve (PRV) will also be installed.

“The water supply will be off for about six hours, from 8:30am to 14:30, on Wednesday for the installation of the PRV.

“Residents can then also expect shorter interruptions of the water supply from time to time over the period August 5 to 16 as we bring the new line in use,” he said.

Campher said a 650m-long section of the old 75mm asbestos main line to Boskloof had been replaced with a 110mm UPVC pipe.

“Boskloof has been battling with regular pipe breaks. A section of the old pipe in Protea Street has been replaced to help reduce pipe breaks and water interruptions.”

He said UPVC was a more durable and fire-resistant material.

“It is a safe means of transporting drinking water and can also be recycled, making it an eco-friendlier option than asbestos.”

He said the installation of the PRV would also help to mimimise pipe bursts and water losses within the area of Boskloof.

Soup Kitchen opens in KwaNomzamo, Humansdorp

July 25, 2019

Kouga Municipality has boosted the efforts of a KwaNomzamo soup kitchen to help alleviate the plight of the poor.

The Siyabonelela Soup Kitchen this week received catering equipment through the municipality’s Ward Development Fund.

Kouga Speaker Hattingh Bornman said the donation included a bar fridge, gas bottle, gas burner, a large pot to prepare the food and crockery.

Mvuleni Velebayi, from whose house the soup kitchen has been operating, said they were very grateful for the support.

“We’ve been running the soup kitchen for the past 18 months and give food to up to 90 people every Wednesday. Our focus is on the communities of Pola Park and Shukushukuma,” he said.

The Speaker joined Ward Councillor Lefty Vumazonke and members of his ward committee on Monday to hand the donation over to representatives from the soup kitchen.