JEFFREYS BAY’S water woes may soon be something of the past as President Jacob Zuma’s men are now demanding answers from the Kouga Council following a desperate e-mail sent to Zuma by local resident Magda Pietersen.
Although Pietersen claims not to have had any response from Zuma, this despite sending a follow-up e-mail, ward councillor David Aldendorff believes the president’s office became involved because of this.
“I do think that Pietersen’s e-mails combined with the publicity and prominence that it generated was the direct reason for the president stepping in,” he said.
Aldendorff confirmed that Mayor Booi Koerat had mentioned the call from Zuma’s office during the council meeting last week. While a high placed source in the municipality that does not wish be named, said the call came on Friday March 2 and they (the presidents office) demanded an explanation and a full report be sent to them.
Aldendorff also expressed his joy that at last something was being done to solve the town’s water problems.
“J-Bay’s infrastructure is very old and needs to be upgraded. People cannot be expected to keep on living with what the municipality terms water fit for human consumption, but it smells and looks disgusting, and stains washing,” said Aldendorff.
Our Times reported three weeks ago that Pietersen took her plight to Zuma after she was yet again faced with another bundle of stained washing, and she was unable to get any joy from the local municipality.
Pietersen, who manages a sports club and is responsible for the washing of the white table cloths said: “I have spent a small fortune on replacing the tablecloths from my own pocket and the local officials do not have the decency to meet with me.
“I sent the president an e-mail on February 5 and again on the 27th, so I will be overjoyed if he can find us a solution.”
Sewerage is another of the coastal town’s headaches as it has in the past lost its Blue Flag status as a direct result of raw sewerage spilling on to the beach.
Residents have also complained endlessly about continual spills onto various surf spots and onto residential roads. This problem could soon be solved as the Kouga council approved the registration of Phase 2 for the upgrading of the Jeffreys Bay waste water works as a Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) project at a special council meeting last week.
The total amended amount needed for the project is R42635572. The original approved amount was R11944964, leaving a shortfall in excess of R30-million. The project has to be registered as a MIG project before funding can be applied for from the Department of Local Government.