ONLY PORRIDGE. Rethabile Molefe. © Sowetan.
ONLY PORRIDGE. Rethabile Molefe. © Sowetan.

Boitumelo Tshehle

Boitumelo Tshehle

Flies buzzing all over, an unpleasant smell in the air and the poverty are what strikes you at the Grace Riviera informal settlement in Zeerust, North West.

The settlement is home to about 280 families and has a population of 1600.

They rely on one water pump and for their healthcare needs they wait for the mobile clinic that comes around once a month.

There are no toilets or electricity and the majority of people are unemployed.

Children walk about five kilometres to school.

Because of the lack of toilets people relieve themselves in the bushes . Diseases are rife in the settlement.

Grace Riviera people have never tasted the fruits of service delivery.

But there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel.

MEC for finance Maureen Modiselle visited the settlement on Friday and promised to provide services and change the lives of the desperate community for the better.

Modiselle handed out fruit and vegetables to about 500 families from Grace Riviera and the nearby settlement of Willow Park.

Grace Riviera community spokesman Phinias Tsagae said their predicament started six years ago when the farmer they worked for sold his farm, leaving them destitute.