Angry residents want councillor out

Boitumelo Tshehle

Some North West residents have demanded the resignation of their ward councillor and chief because of alleged corruption.

Residents of Lonely Park village near Mafikeng, who staged a protest march to the premier's office yesterday, have accused Ward 28 councillor Joshua Mojaki and his ward committee together with the chief of the village, Kgosana Kgang Tawana, of being corrupt.

Residents claim that Mojaki is disloyal and untrustworthy and is not committed to dealing with the concerns of the community.

A residents' representative, Esau Phetoe, presented a memorandum to North West Premier Edna Molewa complaining about unemployment and corruption in their local government.

The protestors said that Mojaki did not show any commitment to municipal community development programmes and cited the project to tar a main road, Nelson Mandela Drive, saying that the employment opportunities provided by the project had been marred by nepotism.

"We want to disband the crooked and unrealistic Lonely Park ward committee, which was never elected by the community in the first place," Phetoe said.

Tawana responded by saying that he was worried about what was happening to the village. He said residents had also demanded to be involved in another road-tarring project.

"They complain that all the people hired were relatives. This group wants to destroy my tribal council because they do not approve of it. They say they will burn them if they do not cooperate." Tawana said.

Tawana said no one had been bribed nor had relatives been employed in the project.

Akanyang Kaekae, manager in the Speaker's office at Mafikeng municipality, refuted the residents' claims and accused them of disregarding Mojaki's authority and views.

North West director of housing Pule Moipolai said on behalf of the premier that the residents would get a response to their demands within seven days.