Council declares war on poverty, lack of jobs

Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

A Limpopo municipality in the Mopani district has declared war on poverty and is committed to channel all its efforts into service delivery.

The Maruleng municipality in Hoedspruit is one of the five poorest municipalities in the province, but its finances did not deter it from delivering basic services to its communities.

The municipality announced a budget of R24million for bulk water supply to more than 120000 people in Sekororo, near Tzaneen.

The municipality's project manager Aluwani Makadani said the money will be used to supply water and to build a purification plant at the Willows village.

The money will also be used to connect water pipes from Hoedspruit to the area.

Makadani said on completion in June next year all households in the 33 villages will have enough water supplies.

The project, in addition to supplying clean water to the residents, will also provide more than 120 unemployed youth and women in the area with temporary jobs.

The construction of the purification plant is also poised to provide not less than 30 jobs for local people.

In the past, residents were forced to share river water with animals.

Those who have boreholes sell water at exorbitant prices to the poor.

Gerald Komana, a resident from Oaks village, yelled with jubilation on hearing the news.

"Having clean water in our yards has always been our dream. This will help fight poverty in our families because we can start vegetable gardens for our everyday relish," he said smiling.

Mayor Junior Mafogo said the aim was to reduce the unemployment rate among youth and women by 10percent each financial year.

He said they believed water was the most important human basic need.

The municipality recently won the coveted National Vuna (Harvest) Award as the "Best Performing Municipality" in the country.

The municipality also outclassed its contemporaries three weeks ago by winning the Mopani District Mayoral Award and went on to scoop the award for being the home of the Best Non-Govermental Organisation in the district, as well as the Best Ward Committee award.