Message from the Mayor

Guest writer – mayor Sipho Tandani

MAN AT THE TOP: Ndlambe mayor Sipho Tandani

WE were shocked to learn about the untimely passing on of former councillor Gladys Coltman of Alexandria last week.

Coltman served in the council from the 2006 municipal local elections to May 2011. She served as an ANC proportional representation (PR) councillor for the duration of five years and she was committed deployee, mother, grandmother, colleague and comrade.

On behalf of Ndlambe municipal council, the executive committee, and the people of Ndlambe I wish to express our deepest condolences to her entire family and relatives.

May her soul rest in peace.

To the matric class of 2012, I wish to convey a word of encouragement on behalf of Ndlambe council and its people.

The matric examinations have already started and the unfortunate part is that our young brothers and sisters are writing their final examinations at a time when Ndlambe municipality and its people are confronted by the disaster caused by the heavy rains.

The rains have severely affected individual properties, municipal infrastructure, the municipal internal roads network and rural roads which connect us all to our places of education, work, prayer and business.

The 2012 matric class must not to be discouraged by the effects of disaster nor their socio-economic individual situations. They must soldier on and write their examinations with a determination and vigour to succeed. Education is an answer to all of our country's economic sustainability and we must create an educated nation.

I wish you all the best of luck.

Since the rain start the municipality immediately established a Joint Operations Committee which encompasses all stakeholders in the area for the purposes of managing the devastating effects of the heavy rains.

The joint team is still operating at the fire rescue services under the stewardship of the municipal manager and his team of senior managers.

The Cacadu District Municipality is also part of the team and is assisting with required resources.

I am humbled by the response from our civil society formations from all corners of Ndlambe and the country. Since the establishment of Mayor's Disaster Relief Fund, business, individuals and churches are responding quite positively in terms of donations to the fund.

I must also thank our volunteers, people who decided not to stand next to the fence but decided to be physically involved with the dirty work driven by dedication to help the defenceless.

On behalf of the municipality I sincerely thank everyone across the spectrum.

On Sunday October 28, I had a meeting with the chairperson of the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission, Minister Gugile Nkwinti, and we visited the affected areas including the devastated New Rest informal settlement and Medolino Caravan Park in lower Port Alfred.

I also personally addressed a letter to the Commission and the preliminary report done in the form of pictures that include all affected wards such as Bushman's River.

I must say that the meeting is beginning to yield results as the National Disaster Management Team visited Ndlambe on October 31. The official from the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission is in contact with our technical director.

MEC of roads and transport Thandiswa Marawu also visited Ndlambe with her team. We also presented our situation in Bhisho on November 1 and followed by another presentation at Cacadu on November 2.

Lastly, I wish to commend the administration and political leadership in the form of councillors for their dedication and commitment throughout this difficult time we found ourselves and the people in.

I wish also to commend our communities for the way in which they are responding to this situation. I must say that they are acting responsibly.

The rain is not yet over and I encourage every one of us to be vigilant and act responsibly during this time. I requested council on October 29 that the Joint Operation Centre to be allowed to continue until we are satisfied that the rain is over.