EMM responds to L and J residents

The Speaker of Council, Clr Patricia Khumalo, during a meeting with residents at the L and J informal settlement in 2014 when she was responding to the petition filed by the residents complaining about the lack of service delivery in the area.

In response to the issue of poor service delivery at L and J informal settlement, the City of Ekurhuleni’s spokesperson Themba Gadebe said the city has been providing basic services to the area, which includes the provision of water tankers to fill up water storage tanks and chemical toilets.

“The informal settlement is established on privately owned land, making it difficult for the city to administer permanent infrastructure developments on the farm. The water storage tanks are filled daily to ensure that there is continuous water supply in the area,” added Gadebe.

In a statement issued by the Democratic Alliance (DA) MPL Mervyn Cirota, the DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Cooperative Governance, Traditional Affairs and Human Settlements, Cirota stated, “It is extremely shocking that 23 years into our democracy there are people in Gauteng who are still using the bucket toilet system.”

“The residents of L and J informal settlement near Olifantsfontein in Ekurhuleni face inhumane conditions where up to 22 people share one bucket toilet. The bucket toilet system is undignified, inhumane, unsanitary and a violation of human rights.”

“Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina, in his State of the City address, promised to deliver basic services to all informal settlements including sanitation, water, refuse collection and electricity. Mayor Masina must now provide time-frames of when these upgrades will take place, as the residents of L and J and other informal settlements across the metro cannot remain living in sub-human conditions,” Cirota stated.

“Gauteng MEC for Cooperative Governance Paul Mashatile must also hold Mayor Masina to his word.”

In response to the statement regarding 22 people sharing one bucket, Gadebe said the number of households that the municipality has on record is 1 550 and a total of 777 chemical toilets are supplied, which is a 1:2 ratio and in line with metro requirements.

“The chemical toilets are serviced twice a week to ensure that they are always kept in good working condition. The supply and delivery of these services is done through consulting the leadership and ward councillor of the area,” said Gadebe.

In 2014, the residents of L and J Informal Settlement filed a petition to the Speaker of Council complaining about poor service delivery in the area.

During the meeting, residents told Patricia Khumalo that they were dissatisfied with their living conditions.

Despite living on privately owned land, they wanted RDP houses, proper sanitation, water and electricity.

Ekurhuleni mayor must eradicate bucket toilet system

Malebo Tseke

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