Pretoria – The informal Skierlik Mountain View has become home to the forgotten and neglected, residents of Mamelodi commune said at the weekend.
Speaking as the bodies of two children were buried on Saturday, frustrated residents of the cabin said the deaths of Tony Lawrence Moore, 4, and Siyabonga Mabila, 7, were long in coming.
The boys drowned in an unfenced quarry two weekends ago and, discouraged locals said, the disaster had, after a long time, drawn attention to the plight of the settlement that grew on the ground and in the mountains.
They said it was a shame that many of them had waited a very long time for decent housing, municipal services and relocation, but it is only now that ministers, MECs and MMCs have visited their homes. canton.
As they buried Siyabonga and Tony, parents Mmalebo Mashaba and Rose Mokoena said they couldn’t afford to see the lifeless bodies of other children coming out of a quarry, or any of the holes found scattered around. in their commune.
Although some members of the community said they wanted to be relocated, some continued to build and repair their huts indicating that they were at home as long as needed.
City spokeswoman Lindela Mashigo said residents of the informal settlement were actually very docile and were being transferred to Mooiplaats.
This is where survivors of the 2019 Mamelodi floods were also relocated.
Mashigo said there was no truth to the rumors that Tshwane was attempting to forcefully leave the country after the boys’ deaths.
He said the community is working well with the city and that even the rumor that the land where the quarry is located had been allocated for the construction of a school was not true.
However, at the boys’ funeral, businessman Stemer Monageng of King Civil Engineering Contractors lambasted the town of Tshwane for failing to provide residents of informal settlements with adequate services and decent housing.
He said he had worked in the area for three years and had even helped feed the needy and train men and women, but he was not happy with what the city had done to improve the lives of locals. of the disadvantaged community.
“For the City, these people are not well located. I will speak my truth and those who want to be upset can be upset. These are your people… what are you doing for these people? You always come here when there is a problem. People have built (huts) around the dam but they’re not even supposed to be here. If you had given them permanent places, this disaster would not have happened.
More and more people spoke of the pain of children without decent facilities and amenities to occupy them, saying the hot weather – and the availability of water in the dam – was what killed them. the boys.
“We lived in small, cramped neighborhoods; there is no swimming pool, no park, nothing. What better way to do than swim, ”added a parent, adding that drugs, teenage pregnancies and general youth delinquency were also rampant as the area went under the radar and received no services and no services. government attention.
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Mamlodi community says drowned boys’ deaths were long in coming
SourceMamlodi community says drowned boys’ deaths were long in coming