Sewerage: A lifestyle in eMbalenhle 


The situation in eMbalenhle continues to deteriorate under the current leadership of Govan Mbeki Municipality, be it waste collection, electricity, water supply or sewerage, these are all big problems of late. Earlier this year a company, known to the public, was appointed to sort out the sewerage problem in eMbalenhle. A big budget by the National Government (COGTA) was assigned for this programme. 
But more than a year later sewerage continues to run rampant in eMbalenhle. If you are driving around the township, you’ll come across severe sewerage spills all over the township. Recently African Swine Fever hit eMbalenhle and affected pigs are still in the community. Everyone knows how contagious African Swine Fever is. There is a great concern from the community in extension 19 (Gate 5 and 6) eMbalenhle. The community is concerned that the pigs are drinking and eating from the sewerage in their yards. This has been reported to the municipality multiple times. The community has only given guidelines to deal with the situation but no action has been taken at all.
The community wrote to the office of the Public Protector of South Africa regarding this situation and are still awaiting an answer.
“But as long as the community continues to be sick and our children vomit blood now and then because we smell sewerage every day,” said a concerned member from extension 19.
The Bulletin investigated the problem and the conditions are truly horrendous for anyone to live in.  
A contractor was based in extension 18, near the sports ground, but when The Bulletin visited the site there was no one and the pipes weren’t being worked on nor could anyone tell how far along the project is.
When people nearby this site were asked about the contractor, they said that a very bad job has been done. The community was unsatisfied and no one knows what is happening. Now the questions arise again: did the contractor up and leave with all the money and no one from GMM is following up on what happened or did no one from Co-operative Governance (COGTA) follow up on the progress of the programme?
One of the community members said: “The problem is accountability from the Tendering Committee in Govan Mbeki Municipality it is not monitored by anyone which makes them to do as they please. There is nothing good going on in this township because no one from Gert Sibande Municipality ever do roadshows to evaluate and monitor the day to day running of the municipality but this municipality is under the big District Gert Sibande.”
If no action is taken, sooner rather than later, eMbalenhle will have to be declared a Disaster Place to live in because health conditions are at its worst and no one cares about it. – Sandile Mkhwanazi


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