Regarded as one of the tourism jewels in North West, Hartbeespoort is anything but. This once beautiful town surrounding the Hartbeespoort Dam has turned into a sorry mess with roads made inaccessible by potholes, streaming sewage in all suburbs, water leaks, broken traffic lights, to name but a few, all the result of no service delivery by the Madibeng municipality.
In a letter to the administrator of the municipality, Hartbeespoort ward councillor, Erna Rossouw, expressed her concern about the alarming deterioration of the popular tourist destination. Some roads are almost inaccessible due to large potholes, such as the entrance road to Ifafi from the R511, parts of Ou Wapad, a number of streets in Schoemansville and Melodie, and many more.
In all suburbs, sewage has been streaming down roads, into properties and into the Hartbeespoort Dam at various points. So has water from burst and leaking water pipes. In some areas, gaping trenches have been left open after work was done on water pipes, some of them filled with water and not cordoned off for safety. This has already resulted in accidents, on which Kormorant reported the past months.
According to Rossouw, there is little, and mostly no response to requests for repair. And maintenance is unheard of.
“Recently the most common replies to my requests were ‘no parts in the store’ and ‘technicians don’t work overtime’. We as councillors do not know what to tell the community anymore. The municipality seems to just ignore the reports and requests for repairs,” she said.
Councillor Maritza du Plessis said the councillors in Hartbeespoort had a meeting with the administrator and handed over an official letter, detailing the lack of service delivery and sorry state of the town. “We were told that the problems would be looked into and we felt quite positive, but nothing happened. The excuse was the municipality’s financial state. If you contact the municipal manager, you get a response of ‘noted’, whatever that means. Maybe it means, ‘we acknowledge your enquiry but we are not going to do anything about it’. It is so frustrating, as our hands are tied if the majority of the municipal leaders do not share our dedication to the community,” she said.
Kormorant’s enquiries to the municipality for the past months have seemingly been ignored.
In the meantime, the administrator’s contract has come to an end at the end of November and he was recalled. By the time of going to press, the Madibeng municipality was without a leader.