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Roodepoort CBD stakeholders jointly discuss way forward Print E-mail
11 May 2017
StakeholdersRegionD

Stakeholders in the Roodepoort CBD, located in Region C, have been urged to work together to fight crime and combat urban decay.

The call was made by the Regional Director, Mlamleli Belot, at a stakeholder engagement meeting at the Roodepoort Civic Centre on Tuesday May 9.

The meeting – convened and chaired by Cllr Gert Niemand, the Ward 84 councillor and Chairperson of the Ethics and Disciplinary Committee – was attended by local businesspeople, community leaders, informal traders and representatives of City entities such as Pikitup, Johannesburg Roads Agency, City Parks & Zoo and Johannesburg Water.

The Roodepoort CBD is located in Ward 84 and covers areas such as the City Hall, the Finance District, shopping areas and the railway station precinct.

Cllr Niemand said the purpose of the meeting was to bring all stakeholders together to make their input on how to fight crime and develop the central business district.

Belot said all stakeholders needed to have a developmental mindset to take the CBD forward and improve the quality of life of the residents.

“We need the Johannesburg Social Housing Company (JOSHCO), Johannesburg Metro Police Department, businesspeople, the taxi association, informal traders and community leaders to work in partnership with the City to address crime and urban decay in the short and medium term,” he said.

Belot’s call was in response to concerns about the high crime rate and drug abuse raised by Advocate Mohammed Daisof, a representative of the Roodepoort Library and Lappies Movement.

Advocate Daisof said the area was teeming with criminals, who hid in long uncut grass waiting to pounce on unsuspecting passers-by. He lamented the high rate of drug abuse and the unacceptable high number of potholes that had made the area more unsafe.

Cllr Niemand said JOSHCO would soon start building 94 housing units in the CBD at a cost of about R40-million.

Willie Vermaak of the Roodepoort Inner City Outreach pleaded with the City to provide his organisation with a bigger and better training and rehabilitation facility to enable it to continue assisting drug addicts. He said his organisation had a huge challenge of providing accommodation for drug addicts and help them to acquire skills.

JRA’s Regional Operations Manager, Lawrence Maseko, said the entity would soon embark on the resurfacing of streets and marking of roads. He, however, appealed to business owners and vendors to refrain from dumping rubbish info kerb inlets and vandalising streets signs.

Welcome Nkosi of Pikitup said the entity was doing its best to keep the streets clean but was faced with illegal dumping practices by communities, businesspeople and informal traders.

Ben Letseka, a representative of local informal traders, said his members were not given proper places to ply their trade. This resulted, he said, in them fighting for space with members of the local taxi association. He appealed to the City to help them trade without fear.

Those attending the meeting agreed that a follow-up meeting must take place at the end of June and that a CBD Forum must be initiated by the ward councillor.

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Last Updated on 11 May 2017