Sub-council celebrates athlete’s success

SOYISO MALITI

Councillors kicked off the Sub-council 2 meeting on Wednesday April 20 by celebrating athlete Wayde van Niekerk’s recent successes, with his family.

Wathen and Sophia van Niekerk, the national track star’s grandparents, made a brief appearance to accept a certificate from sub-council speaker and Ward 7 councillor Grant Twigg.

Van Niekerk became the first South African sprinter to break the 10 seconds barrier for 100m, 20 seconds for 200m and 44 seconds for 400m in Bloemfontein, booking him a seat to the Rio Olympics in Brazil in August.

Mr Twigg said: “On behalf of sub-council, we acknowledge our sports (personalities) in the community. For us, it’s really a privilege to recognise contributions, not only for South Africa but for Kraaifontein.”

Van Niekerk’s achievements showed the youth that irrespective of where they came from, they should always aim to reach higher, said Mr Twigg.

Proceedings moved swiftly to discussions of contentious issues, including housing, the budget for the 2016/2017 financial year and the traffic services report.

During his budget presentation, Mr Twigg said R5.1m budget had been set aside for recreational activities in Scottsville.

He said it was a pity a small group of residents had disrupted a public meeting on Monday April 11 to discuss the budget, stopping other residents from participating and having their voices heard.

He said those who did not take part in public participation were often the first to “stand up, and jump and sing and make a noise”.

Mr Twigg referred to the newly-approved Maroela Housing Project where the election of a project committee had been disputed.

To prevent the whole development from falling apart, Mayco member for human settlements Benedicta van Minnen, Sub-council 7 chairman Gerhard Fourie, and officials would oversee a re-election of a new committee in Ward 111.

Mr Twigg gave a Powerpoint presentation of before-and-after photographs showing City improvements to various streets in Scottsville, Kuils River and Wallacedene. He also said a new spray park was benefiting the Scottsville community.

Not so, countered ANC proportional representative councillor Gert Moolman, who labelled the park“a white elephant”.

Mr Twigg said the spray park had been built in Scottsville because it had the least recreational facilities in Kraaifontein.

Turning its attention to the traffic report for January, the sub-council heard that traffic officers had arrested a State prosecutor on charges of drinking and driving in Kraaifontein.

According to the report, total offences in Brackenfell for January skyrocketed from 133 in January 2015 to 874 in the same period this year.

In Kraaifontein, the offences logged in January 2015 rose from 280 in January 2015 to 925 in January this year. Northpine registered a meagre 13 and 28 in January 2015 and January 2016, respectively.

There were no offences registered for Kuils River in January 2015, but 74 for January this year. There were only two fines logged in Wallacedene in January this year compared to none last year.

The report’s comparative statistics also showed a total of 351 prosecutions in last January compared to the 1 235 charged this January in Sub-council 2.

Total operations, including road blocks and warrant operations, among others, went from 20 in January last year to 96 in the first month of this year.