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Rabie Ridge residents vent their anger at IDP meeting Print E-mail
06 April 2017
RabieRidgeIDP

In Rabie Ridge we don’t have a clinic; what we have is a shack called a clinic.”

With these emotive words, local resident Rex Mawila summed up the levels of the ratepayers’ frustrations over the lack or poor state of public facilities in this sprawling Region A suburb.

Mawila was speaking during a review of the City of Johannesburg’s Integrated Development Plan (IDP) at the Rable Ridge Community Hall, north of Johannesburg, last night (Wednesday April 5) in which residents vented their anger at the unacceptable levels of service delivery in the suburb and surrounding areas such as Ebony Park and Ivory Park.

The meeting – one in a series of public engagement sessions being held under the IDP banner throughout Johannesburg ahead of the City’s Budget announcement in May – was also attended by Regional Director Abigail Ndlovu, Speaker of Council Cllr Vasco da Gama and councillors from various wards in the region.

Region A consists of five wards – 78, 79, 92, 110 and 111 – and includes 63 informal settlements. Recurring sewer blockages, the poor state of roads, under-resourced law enforcement agencies and the lack of proper healthcare facilities dominated discussions at the meeting.

Exuding boundless energy and passion, Mawila told City officials and elected public representatives that there was a huge need to improve primary healthcare in the area. “We want to know how, through the IDP process, the existing clinic in Rabie Ridge is going to be expanded to meet the demand of the community,” said Mawila.

“Look at Mayibuye Clinic, the facility does not have adequate ventilation. We request that it be fixed as a matter of urgency. Bophelong Clinic is too small. Can it be extended?” Mawila asked.

A resident of Ward 111 said Ebony Park community members felt neglected. “We don’t have a taxi rank. There’s no police station. Levels of crime in this area are high. We don’t have exit roads. Ebony Park is deteriorating rapidly. It’s as if we’re the poor cousins of affluent suburbs such as Midrand,” said the resident.

Grace Mashaba of the Themba Khoza informal settlement said the sewage flowing all over the streets in her neighbourhood was posing a serious health hazard. “Our area is smelly and infested with rats. Our kids are being run over by cars. Gravel roads have to be tarred and speed humps built,” said Mashaba.

Other residents told the meeting that Ivory Park Police Station was under-resourced as it only had four vehicles. Police were also accused of taking bribes from notorious drug dealers.

Cllr Meshack van Wyk, Chairperson of Community Development Section 79 Portfolio Committee, responded to some of the issues raised.

“We’ve heard community members. Notes have been taken. The regional director has also heard the issues raised. Decisions to be made politically will be taken in that manner. We take these issues seriously. As councillors and officials we’re accountable to the people. This IDP session has been about engaging the people,” said Cllr Van Wyk.

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Last Updated on 06 April 2017