Byline: Andani Matumba

13 July 2022

Community members of Ex 33 in Kinross which falls under Govan Mbeki Municipality Ward 16 were up in arms and threatened to stop the project on Wednesday, 13 July 2022.

This followed after there were allegations that the ward councillor of ward 16, Cllr Rose Nkabinde had instructed a lady by the name of Ms Pauline Radebe to commence work at the sewer plant project site based in Marikana, Kinross.

The project is meant to redress the sanitation issues by constructing sewer pipes and road infrastructure at Kinross Ext, 33.

It is further alleged that the decision for Ms Radebe’s appointment was taken at a meeting which was convened on Tuesday at the Govan Mbeki Municipality offices and in attendance at the meeting was said to be Cllr Thandi Ngxonono (MMC of Planning and Development), Cllr Rose Nkabine (ward councillor of ward 16), the Project Managers, and the Project CLO.

According to the information received by Seskhona Media, the CLO, Mr Jerome Mpanza was removed from the meeting and was later recalled to the meeting after the agenda of said was adopted although his role is to report on the project and serves as a bridge between the community, municipality and the contractor.

According to the community members, the contractor and management at the site, the councillor ought to have reported to the community immediately after the meeting or the next day but failed to do so.

After hearing about the appointment of Ms Radebe,  an angry mob went to the site and called for the removal of Ms Radebe who was already dressed in protective clothing, forcing her to take off the PPE and vacate the site.

Cllr Rose Nkabinde responded swiftly and went to the project site in order to clarify the misunderstanding.

Although she was able to clarify the issue, upon arrival, Cllr Nkabinde was locked into the project site by community members who demanded answers regarding the appointment of Ms Radebe.

Radebe is disheartened by the disapproval of the people in Marikana, “I do not understand why these people hate me so much because I am also a community member who is entitled to benefit from this project and to be employed by the project serving the interests of the community.”

In her plea, Radebe stated further that she is treated like a foreigner at the place where she was born and raised, which is unfair because people just hate her without having met her personally.

“We already have a CLO, therefore we do not see the need that a new CLO is appointed meanwhile there is no vacancy and with someone already occupying that position,” said the concerned community members.

It was just one big misunderstanding that Ms Radebe was appointed as a CLO whist in fact she was appointed as a General worker.

Cllr Rose Nkambinde had to call for the assistance of police so that the members of the community may release her.

Upon investigation of the issues, Seskhona Media also discovered that there is a petition dated 21 June 2022 (written as it showed on the original document) )which is alleged to have been signed by community members stating, “This letter regards to the CLO of Marikana ward 16. He was not elected by the community of Marikana and no interview take place. Posts where postponed regards to the interview that was supposed to take at Municipality but place at another. Now the community suggest that new CLO must be elected”.

According to Mr Bheki Jiyane, the petition was signed by the members of the community and Jiyane further confirmed that he went from house to house for signatures.

“I can confirm that members of the community signed the petition themselves in their own handwriting,” said Jiyane.

Meanwhile, some of the community members allege that their names are reflected on the petition documents but their signatures have been forged and fraudulent contact numbers inserted whilst some stand numbers do not match the names of the community members who live there.