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Vehicles torched as protesters demand basic service delivery

Vehicles were set alight by residents of Westville informal settlement in Gqeberha on Tuesday.

Over 200 protesters went to the streets of Gqeberha demanding quick installation of sewer and water infrastructure.

Service delivery protest in Gqeberha

According to Ground Up, protesters in Kwadwesi Extension stated that the project stalled since 2017 due to frequent changes in leadership and policies, stressing that RDP house construction could proceed if the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality installed sewer infrastructure.

Protesters used whistles, burned tires, and blocked roads with rocks, branches, and storm water pipes.

Ground Up reported that three trucks and a light bakkie driven by contractors to the municipality driving on Mission Road were set alight, while municipal vehicles were pelted with stones with protesters shouting to drivers.

Sipho Ntsondwa, Chairperson of the Westville Development Committee, stated that the area had lacked basic amenities like high mast lights, roads, and infrastructure for nearly 24 years, leading to ongoing protests among residents.

He highlighted the stark contrast of having only 300 chemical toilets for 6,500 homes in Westville.

According to Ground Up, when Mayco Member for Human Settlements Thembinkosi Mafana arrived, resident Ntabelanga Bele confronted him, alleging that he had made empty promises.

The protesters told Mafana to meet them again on Wednesday and bring all the relevant officials “or else we won’t stop protesting.” 

Service delivery in South Africa

Service delivery in South Africa has become the biggest challenge for municipalities.

Service delivery challenge is largely due to all municipalities across the country not having the required resources to fulfil the delivery of basic services to communities within which they operate.

By lacking in resources, it derails economic development and growth opportunities in poor communities.

Service delivery in South Africa remains a big challenge for municipalities, by lacking in infrastructure, resources and maintenance, they are unable to provide communities with quality service delivery in fast turnaround time.

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