Sharpeville youth want change in municipality

Emfuleni voters cast their votes for jobs and better service delivery.
Emfuleni voters cast their votes for jobs and better service delivery.
Image: Tebello Potlwane

The new administration in the Emfuleni local municipality should prioritise starting a local economy that will address service delivery issues while reducing unemployment at the same time.

This is the call from the very few young people who cast their vote in Sharpeville on Monday morning.

The youth told Sowetan that they still were committed to voting as they wanted to see an end to unemployment which is high in the township.

Lebohang Masakale, 25, said she obtained a degree in financial accounting two years ago, thinking that it would turn around her fortunes in finding employment but that was not the case.

“The youth are struggling to find employment but the municipality is also failing to collect refuse. There is a lot of open spaces in Sharpeville which can be utilised to create a local economy. The youth can use those pockets of land to sort the waste and start a proper recycling company which will create jobs. That is the kind of local economy that can be created,” said Masakale.

She said the township still does not have proper street lights and potholes are the order of the day when one drives in their neighbourhood.

“I’m voting to see all these things fixed and to see the youth being uplifted,” she said.

Bokang Mbuthuma, 18, a first year student at the University of Free State said voting to him means having a right to demand progress in his community.

“Voting is crucial so that when you stand for what you want – basic services and economic opportunity, your voice is heard. We are a community with a very rich history but there is no development. We want to see things change.

“We don’t have tarred roads. There is serious load-shedding and it means I cannot join class online. We need to see a local economy where youth can be able to find employment and be prevented from getting into wrong things…,” Mbuthuma said.

Sharpeville is one of the big townships in Emfuleni. It has a rich history but has very little to show for it in terms of development.

Resident, Keneiloe Morake, 41, said despite the challenges that the municipality has faced, she still believes the ANC should lead the council.

“I do want to see change in Sharpeville but I do believe that the ANC should govern. I have hope in the ANC. I feel that some of our youth are impatient. They want things to happen immediately. I also want change but I understand that things take time,” Morake said.

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