Archive for the ‘Jeffreys Bay’ Category

In Kouga, the DA is a government for the future

September 17, 2019

If we want to build a modern, resilient country that is able to adapt to the challenges of our fast-changing world, then we have to make sure we remain future-focused.

We cannot live in the past and cling to failed ideas from the past, the way our government loves to do. We must look ahead and plan ahead.

Our biggest challenges in this country are our sky-rocketing unemployment and high levels of poverty, and this will remain so for many years to come.

But if we are not cognisant of how the global challenges of the 21st century – climate change, the proliferation of disease and technology – will impact on poverty and unemployment, then we will fall even further behind.

This starts with building a capable state staffed by qualified, fit-for-purpose individuals. We need a government that is agile and responsive. And we need our cities and towns to be at the forefront of driving growth through not only clean governance but also through innovative ideas.

The expanded unemployment rate here in the Eastern Cape is 46%. That means almost half of all working-age citizens in this province cannot find a job.

That is a shameful statistic and one which requires all of our attention. If we are to have any chance of turning this around, then we will need to transform our towns and cities into modern economies, attractive to both businesses and citizens alike.

This is why it is crucial that we embrace new ideas and new technology that can open doors to investors as well as deliver services to citizens. And not only at national government level. New thinking and innovative ideas should be the key focus of all levels and spheres of government if we are to prepare ourselves for the future.

Koraal Street in Jeffreys Bay is a good example of this kind of thinking. Almost 2km of it is being resurfaced using recycled plastic material as a binder in the asphalt, and it should be completed by the end of October.

It is the first time that this technology is being trialed in South Africa to build an eco-friendly road.

The recycled plastic replaces a large portion of the bitumen in asphalt, which is made from crude oil. There are multiple benefits to using this material.

For starters, it takes tonnes of plastic from our landfills and prevents this from breaking down and leaching into the groundwater. It is strong and resistant to wear, with significantly fewer potholes, cracks or breaks.

And then there is the employment aspect, with the potential for hundreds of jobs not only in the construction of the roads but also upstream in the collection and sorting of the waste.

This particular product has been extensively tested and does not leech plastic particles into the environment – unlike some so-called eco-roads that end up doing more harm than good. If this pilot project is successful, then this could have a major impact not only on the quality of our road surfaces but also on our environment.

But this isn’t the only exciting pilot project being undertaken by the DA-led Kouga municipality. Elsewhere they have also started testing a special kind of concrete normally used in the underground roads of mines to fill potholes.

This special concrete dries rock hard within an hour and could be the answer to the municipality’s daunting pothole problem.

When it comes to innovating solutions and the use of technology, DA governments across the country are setting the standard.

The world will not wait for South Africa to catch up. It is up to us to leave the 20th century and all its out-dated ideas behind and meet the challenges of the 21st-century head-on.

Because only then will we succeed in building sustainable and integrated towns and cities, and building one South Africa for all.

Mmusi Maimane

Leader of the Democratic Alliance

Advertisements

Wyk 3 neem dienslewering na mense

August 18, 2019

Willem Gertenbach, Wyk 3 DA-raadslid in Jeffreysbaai, se dienslewering-arsenaal is onlangs verdriedubbeld: raadslid, wykskomitee en kantoor – ’n eerste vir dié wyk.

Gertenbach, spog sedert begin Julie met sy eie wykskantoor – meer as nege jaar ná die Kouga-munisipaliteit die gebou vir die spesifieke doeleinde opgerig het.

Die gebou, met sy wit mure en rooi dak, het vir jare in onbruik gestaan.

Gerteenbach se arsenaal word met ’n wyk-assistent, André Joubert, en ’n wykskomitee afgerond.

Die doel?

Om eerstehands die klagtes en griewe van Wavecrest-inwoners aan te hoor.

“Na jare van onderhandeling is daar ’n voltydse wykassistent vir die wyk aangestel,” sê Gertenbach. “Joubert sal my met sekere administratiewe take bystaan om dienslewering tot voordeel van die inwoners te verbeter.

“Inwoners is welkom om hom op weeksdae tussen 08:00 en 16:00 by die kantoor te besoek.”

Volgens Gertenbach sluit pogings om dienslewering in die gebied te verbeter, die oprig van verskeie straatnaamborde in.

“Al die strate in Wyk 3 spog met splinternuwe naamborde,” sê hy. “Daar is altesaam 220 nuwe borde vanaf Poplarstraat tot by Noorsekloofweg aangebring. Dit volg na verskeie klagtes oor onleesbare straatnaamborde – beide deur inwoners en besoekers.

“Die projek is deur die wykontwikkelingsfonds moontlik gemaak.”

Verdere projekte sluit in die oprigting van ’n opelug gimnasium, die aanlê van randstene, die opgradering van speelparke en die bou van ’n gemeenskapsaal.

Vir inligting, skakel 042 200 2209 of 082 552 5402.

Stuur ’n epos na ward3@kouga.gov.za of andre.joubert@bwise.co.za

Kouga Express

Affordable housing scheme for Jeffreys Bay

August 17, 2019

The DA led Kouga Municipality is set to introduce a new project which will open up rental and housing opportunities for residents who earn too much to qualify for a free RDP house.

Kouga Planning and Development Portfolio Councillor Ben Rheeder said the municipality had invited proposals for the first-ever Finance Linked Individual Subsidy Programme (FLISP) and Social Housing development in the region.

“FLISP is a housing programme that makes it easier for South African citizens who earn between R3 501 and R22 000 per month to become first-time home-owners while Social Housing is a key model that provides affordable, medium-density rental housing to low and middle-income households,” he explained.

He said a portion of erf 335 in Jeffreys Bay, bordering the Aston Bay road and Koraal Street, had been approved by Council for the development.

“The project will unlock opportunities for a whole new segment of our population and help to address the lack of affordable housing in the region,” he said.

“We will be starting in Jeffreys Bay, where the biggest need has been identified, but we would also like to launch similar projects in our other towns.”

He said the municipality had already received an in-principle approval from the Social Housing Regulatory Authority (SHRA) and the provincial Department of Human Settlements for the development.

Development proposals for the project were invited in June and evaluation of the submissions is currently under way.

Rheeder said that while the municipality would be making available the land, it would be the responsibility of the developer to secure the necessary funding, implement the project, handle the marketing and manage the subsequent tenanting of the stock or sale of the units.

Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks said the Council was proud to launch another “first” for Kouga.

“This is the latest in a string of recent housing successes,” he said.

“Social Housing, in particular, contributes to transforming urban spatial patterns as it promotes integration and densification in close proximity to economic and social amenities.”

He said as part of Council’s commitment to transparency, housing committees have also been established to improve communication between communities, the municipal administration, Council and the provincial and the national departments of Human Settlements.

Keeping our streets safe is our mission

August 12, 2019

The DA Shadow Minister of Police, Andrew Whitfield, met with residents of Madiba Bay on Saturday and discussed the issue of crime that is affecting all communities in Jeffreys Bay.

Whitfield, who is also leader of the DA in Kouga, said that children need to grow up in communities that are safe and free from criminals who roam the streets, robbing people and making them fear leaving their homes.

“We have a responsibility to leave the world a safer place so that our children do not grow up in fear,” said Whitfield at a meeting of community leaders in Madiba Bay.

“We need to build a safe community so that people wont fear to leave their houses to go and work. Its important that local government, the Police and initiatives like a neighbourhood watch work together to fight crime.

We must build a safe community so that we can build a prosperous community and that includes more visible policing in our streets,” said Whitfield, who was joined by Mayor Horatio Hendricks and other Jeffreys Bay Councillors at the house meeting of community members who want to establish a neighbourhood watch in Madiba Bay.

Whitfield also went door to door with the DA activists and met with residents who shared their concerns about crime and signed the petition requesting the Minister of Police to increase Police visibility in our towns and communities.

The DA petition calls for the following:

  • More visible policing and frequent patrols of crime hotspots.
  • Frequent raids of drug dens and known crime areas as well as the hideaway spots of criminals.
  • Drastically improve on the response time when attending to complaints of violent crime.
  • Formulation of a collective crime prevention strategy.
  • More resources committed to crime prevention initiatives.

Stormwater installation starts at ‘plastic’ road in Jeffreys Bay

August 2, 2019

The installation of new stormwater pipes will start at Woltemade Street, Jeffreys Bay, next week as the DA led Kouga Municipality prepares to build Africa’s first eco-friendly road.

The stormwater pipes were delivered to the site this week.

Site foreman Wynand Human, Kouga Mayor Horatio Hendricks, DA MPL Vicky Knoetze and site agent Ruendell Plaatjies at the stormwater pipes, set to be installed from next week.

Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks said a 1,7km stretch of Woltemade and Koraal Streets is set to be rebuilt over the next three months.

“What will make the roads different is the top layer, which will include recycled plastic.

“The testing of this product, developed by the Scottish company MacRebur, was recently finalised,” he said.

Hendricks said the contractor, SP Excel, expected to complete the stormwater installation next week. Excavation of the new road will then begin the following week.

“The contractor will first be rebuilding a section of Woltemade Street before moving on to Koraal Street in September.

“Once excavation starts, Woltemade Street will be closed to traffic from Jeffreys to St Francis Street. The contractor will, however, ensure that there are pedestrian pathways to minimise the inconvenience to businesses in that area.”

The ground-breaking initiative is a joint project by Kouga Municipality, MacRebur SA and two Port Elizabeth-based civil engineering and construction companies, SP Excel and Scribante Construction.

The partnership was facilitated by Vicky Knoetze, a DA MPL, who first introduced the idea of using waste plastic to solve some of South Africa’s road problems to the East Cape Provincial Legislature in 2017.

Hendricks said that what MacRebur offered, was an enhancement of the asphalt mix traditionally used for the top layer of roads.

“Plastic waste is processed into pellets and used to replace a large component of the bitumen in a conventional asphalt mix.

“It is estimated that up to 1,8 million plastic bags can be used in just one kilometre of road,” he said.

“The result is a road that is stronger, more durable and easier to maintain.”

He said Kouga was looking forward to the potential benefits of the trial.

“Should the trial be successful, we would like to see a factory being built locally to produce the pellets, which had to be imported from Scotland for the trial.

“This would mean work at the factory, as well as a means for communities to make money by collecting and selling plastic waste.”

He said the trial would be done at no cost to the municipality, with the respective partners set to foot the bill.

The expected completion date has been set for mid-October.

Take part in the Kouga Municipality’s Customer Satisfaction Survey

July 3, 2019

Kouga Municipality’s annual Customer Satisfaction Survey is underway. Speaker Hattingh Bornman says the aim of the survey is to determine how residents experienced service delivery – including water, electricity, refuse removal, sanitation and roads – during the 2018/2019 financial year that comes to an end on June 30.

He calls on residents to make use of the platform to scrutinize the municipality and to suggest areas of improvement.

Bornman says the Council values input from residents as this helps the municipality to identify and prioritise work that needs to be done.

He said the survey will not replace platforms such as community meetings, but is designed to enhance accountability and the involvement of residents in municipal affairs.

Survey forms, in all three languages most spoken in Kouga, are available at www.kouga.gov.za.

Forms will also be available from ward councillors’ offices from Monday, July 1.

Completed forms can be returned to the ward councillor’s offices or posted to PO Box 21, Jeffreys Bay, 6330.

Electronic versions can be emailed to lrandall@kouga.gov.za.

The forms have the different services offered by the municipality, with scores of one to five, the former reflecting the worst opinion and the latter the best.

The closing date for the survey is July 31, 2019.

Service delivery report-back meetings, where residents can engage with the municipal leadership about service successes and challenges in their wards, are currently taking place. The schedule is available at www.facebook.com/kouganews.

Plant a tree and save the future

June 25, 2019

Planting a tree is said to be one of the best ways to secure your children and grandchildren’s futures.

Kouga Community Services Portfolio Councillor Daniel Benson would, therefore, like to call on all stakeholders to join the municipality’s tree-planting drive.

Piet van der Walt of Plantelus Nursery shows Kouga Community Services Portfolio Councillor Daniel Benson what a Cape Ash looks like.

“August and September are two of the best months to plant certain indigenous trees,” he said.

“We’d like to encourage all residents and businesses to join us in planting trees, be it in their gardens or at their premises.

“The DA led Kouga Municipality will also be identifying public areas, including parks and sidewalks, where we would like to plant trees.”

Benson recently visited respected gardener Piet van der Walt, of Plantelus Nursery in Jeffreys Bay, for advice on which trees to plant.

“He recommended the Cape Ash and Wild Plum trees. Both trees are indigenous, grow fast and require little maintenance. An added advantage, especially in coastal areas, is that they are wind resistant.”

He said these trees must preferably be planted in a sunny spot.

“Also important is that these trees are less prone to damaging roads, walls and buildings, as both have taproots which grow directly downward.”

Benson said that while spekboom was a good option, Van der Walt cautioned that they do not grow as quickly as the Wild Plum or Cape Ash.

“The tree-planting drive is part of Kouga Municipality’s commitment to combating climate change.

“Trees not only create the very oxygen we breathe and need to survive, but they also remove harmful greenhouse houses from the air,” he said.

Public meeting for DA supporters in Ward 14 today

June 19, 2019

The Democratic Alliance will be holding a public meeting at the Marina Martinique Hall this afternoon at 4 pm.

The meeting is for all DA voters and supporters who live in Aston Bay, Marina Martinique, Madiba Bay, Ocean View and the Sands.

Election results in Ward 14 will be presented as well as the performance of the DA both provincially and nationally.

The way forward for the DA will be discussed as the party embarks on an internal review process.

“All signed up members of the DA are invited to take part in the internal review process and make their inputs about the future of the party and ultimately democracy in South Africa,” said DA Councillor Brenton Williams who will be hosting the meeting this afternoon at Marina Martinique.

There will be an opportunity after the meeting for DA supporters to sign up as members of the party.

Service delivery in Ward 14 will be discussed as well as salient features of the 2019/20 budget.

Breaching of the Seekoei River mouth begins

May 14, 2019

The breaching of the Seekoei estuary mouth at Paradise Beach got under way yesterday morning in Jeffreys Bay.

It is expected that it will take at least three weeks to remove enough sand for the estuary mouth to be opened, with a 50m x 500m trench set to be excavated.

The excavation site, as well as a section of the parking area, have been cordoned off.

We ask that people please remain outside these demarcated areas for safety reasons,” said Brenton Williams, the DA Councillor for Aston Bay.

The Seekoei River is suffering from a lack of base flow into the estuary with up to 26 legal dams in the catchment area and many illegal dams preventing the flow of fresh water.

This causes a high salinity level in the estuary and residents have reported numerous big fish dying off in the estuary that borders both Aston Bay and Paradise Beach.

The reason for the breach is to create a flow of sea water into the Seekoei River estuary to assist in reducing the salinity level.

Dead fish causes alarm at Seekoei River estuary

April 18, 2019

An emergency application is due to be submitted to the Department of Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEDEAT) for the breaching of the Seekoei estuary mouth at Paradise Beach, Jeffreys Bay.

The water level of the estuary has dropped to such an extent that fish have been dying in numbers.

“The water in the estuary has been evaporating rapidly because of the hot temperatures and strong winds,” Kouga Municipality’s Community Services Portfolio Councillor Daniel Benson said.

“Combined with this, there has been almost no inflow of fresh water because of the drought and numerous farm dams that trap water in the catchment area.

“This has caused the salinity of the water to shoot up alarmingly.”

He said tests conducted last week indicated that the salt content was more than twice of that of sea water.

“Estuarine life simply cannot survive under those circumstances.”

He said the situation had been reported to DEDEAT and that an emergency application for the breaching of the mouth was being finalised for submission to them in line with section 30 of the National Environmental Management Act.

“It may sound strange to want to add sea water to the estuary to decrease the salt content of the latter.

“The salinity of the estuary is, however, so much higher than that of the ocean at the moment that the sea water will actually help to lower the salt content of the lagoon,” he explained.

“Ideally, what we need, is strong rains to boost the inflow of fresh water from upstream, but that is beyond our control. While the inflow of sea water will not solve the problem completely, it will help to decrease the salinity levels.”

Benson said the Seekoei Estuary Management Plan, that was developed by the municipality and is currently awaiting final approval by the East Cape Environmental Affairs MEC, would help to address this dilemma in the long-term.

“We have been frustrated by the delays in obtaining final approval for the implementation of the plan, but expect to meet with the DEDEAT before the end of the month.”

He said a further frustration was the failure by the national Department of Water and Sanitation to address the many illegal dams in the catchment area.

“The Department recently indicated that they were aware of more than 100 illegal farm dams in the Kouga region, but they have been slow to take action. Once these illegal dams have been removed, there will be more fresh water flowing into the system.”

He cautioned residents against eating the fish.