Wind, vandals stunt Walmer tunnel project

Nomahlubi Jordaan

PORT Elizabeth’s infamous wind and vandalism have crippled a hydroponics project in Walmer township meant to provide employment for residents.

Since August last year 14 tunnels have been destroyed by strong winds – in some cases up to 117km/h – forcing possible retrenchments. Vandalism has also been a problem.

Until recently high-value crops including patty pans, baby marrows and brinjals were grown for commercial purposes. The project was meant to benefit 10 previously unemployed Walmer township residents who took ownership of it.

Now, only six of the 20 tunnels are operational, and the crop is limited to tomatoes, peppers and patty pans.

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