Outcry over holes left in road after pipe repairs

A group of Uitenhage residents are fed up with having to weave their way around massive potholes which they say the municipality failed to fill after fixing underground water pipes over a month ago.

Residents of John Dissel Drive in Gambleville say it has been a little over a month since municipal workers packed up their machinery, after fixing three underground water leaks within 200m of each other, leaving the 2m long, 1m wide and 1m deep holes as a souvenir. It has since become the source of much frustration among residents, who have to weave around yellow barricades – meant to warn motorists – and swerve to avoid oncoming traffic and parked vehicles.

“There have been so many near misses between cars, because it’s a busy street and people don’t expect the road to go missing. I mean seriously, who finishes a job literally half done like this,” John Dissel Drive resident Ruwaan Brown said.

“When I saw them packing up, I asked where are they going. He [a contractor] just said the job is done, and continued packing up his stuff. “And we have reported it to the ward councillor.”

In Kamesh Road, less than 200m away, despite the major underground leak being fixed a month ago, at least four other leaks could be seen contributing to the streams trickling along the 2km road.

Blikkiesdorp resident Glenda Visagie said: “Why not just fix all the leaks in Kamesh? The municipal plumbers who came to fix one leak a month ago must have just driven through the water coming from the other leaks, because they have all been here for more than a month.”

Ward 48 councillor Tyrone Adams said he was aware of the incidents.

“The holes in John Dissel are a source of major frustration. I have done daily oversight visits to the spot and called the municipality daily to query why they are dragging their feet on this,” he said. “I have been informed by municipal officials that it will be attended to shortly. With regard to the leaks, I was told by the municipal office that the parts [seals and piping] to fix the leaks are being tendered and will be repaired soon.”

Municipal spokesman Mthubanzi Mniki said the infrastructure and engineering directorate and roads and stormwater directorate were “working at closing the gaps between the work done by the two depar tments”.

“In future any damage done by water and sanitation on the road in the process of fixing a water leak will be swiftly repaired, with both departments jointly taking responsibility, ” he said.

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