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Chaos at IDP meeting

Chaos at IDP meeting

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Chaos at IDP meeting

A meeting called to look into the draft 2017-2018 Integrated Development Plan (IDP) at the Hillbrow Recreation Centre in the City of Johannesburg’s Region F was abandoned after proceedings were disrupted by an unruly mob.

Chaos erupted as Member of the Mayoral Committee for Development Planning Cllr Richard Funzela Ngobeni attempted to address the crowd.

The mob went berserk after disapproving of the speakers lined up for the meeting, claiming proper procedure had not been followed in convening it.

MMC Ngobeni was heckled as he tried to restore order, leading to the abrupt and chaotic end to the meeting.

A City official was also manhandled in the upheaval.

ANC Ward Councillor Nokhuthula Xaba said the reason the meeting could not go ahead was because of the alleged failure to follow proper procedure in engaging the community.

“The council was not informed during the planning session about the list of people who would be addressing the meeting. Individuals whose presence was not permitted came to address the meeting, resulting in the disgruntlement of the community.

“We are discontinuing the meeting because we are not going to allow improper procedures when planning these activities. Everything must be consistent and every ward councillor has a responsibility to ensure that communities are well served. We cannot jump due process,” said Cllr Xaba.

Pieter van Vuuren, the City’s Assistant Director of Citizen Relationship and Urban Management (CRUM) in Region F, said: “We will have to reschedule the meeting. It is sad that during the chaos one of our officials was manhandled.”

He said the official was attacked by the mob while trying to protect the City’s branding material. “Due to the violent behaviour of the residents we are forced to cancel the meeting,” said Van Vuuren.

Hillbrow resident Michael Nkabinde said he had hoped the IDP meeting would shed light on his future after living in deplorable conditions for over a decade. He said he was unhappy about the disruption as it had put his fate on hold.

“People are so angry these days. The language they know is protest, protest, protest. They even protest against something that is aimed at helping them,” said Nkabinde.

The IDP public participation process gives residents the opportunity and platform to air their views on the development of their respective communities.

 

Residents take a walk towards a healthier lifestyle

 

The City’s Department of Health and the Department of Environmental Health, in partnership with the Gauteng Provincial Department of Sports, Arts and Culture and the City’s Region F Citizen Relationship and Urban Management (CRUM), hosted day-long health-related activities at JC Lucas Park in Rosettenville.

The activities included a 5km family fun walk, cultural performances, gumboot dance, exercises and aerobics. All participants in the family fun walk were each presented with medals, a cool drink and a fruit.

According to the City’s Operations Manager: Health Promotions, Nonhlanhla Magwaza, the aim of the annual event was to promote a healthy lifestyle in line with the City’s Growth and Development Strategy 2040 (GDS 2040).

“We want our communities to be accustomed to a healthy lifestyle and healthy living. By doing this we are helping in the fight against chronic illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, tuberculosis, epilepsy and asthma, among others,” Magwaza said.

She said March had been declared International Tuberculosis Month by the World Health Organisation. “As a City, in recognition of the International Tuberculosis Month, we decided to go to communities and educate and empower residents about a whole range of lifestyle diseases and chronic illnesses, including tuberculosis, diabetes, hypertension and HIV-Aids,” Magwaza said.

She said the primary focus of the campaign was to improve the lives of our people and to help increase the life expectancy. “Our people die young. A nation without the youth is not a nation at all. 

 

“When our senior citizens and elders die, who is going to take our country forward? Some of these life-threatening lifestyle diseases can be prevented at an early age,” she said. Health practitioners were also on hand to screen residents for hypertension and diabetes.

 

Pikitup in fresh bid to promote recycling

 

Pikitup, the City of Johannesburg’s waste management entity, has placed 48 large refuse bins at strategic areas at the busy Noord Street taxi rank in the Johannesburg CBD to assess the level of recycling awareness among commuters.

According to Pikitup spokesman Muzi Mkhwanazi, this is part of a research project the utility is undertaking with the aim of introducing a culture of recycling among Johannesburg residents.

“We have mounted 48 large refuse bins to assess the level of recycling awareness among commuters using the Noord Street taxi rank in downtown Johannesburg,” Mkhwanazi said.

He said the 50-litre pole-mounted and 90-litre recycling bins had been placed at pedestrian walkways at the taxi rank to generate primary data with the aim of understanding recycling awareness and patterns.

“The research question is: Will placing the two colour-coded bins next to each other – yellow for mixed recyclables and charcoal for refuse – in densely populated public areas increase the recovery of paper, packaging waste and other recyclables from waste generated by the pedestrians?” Mkhwanazi said.

He said Pikitup anticipated that, by placing these bins in strategic positions, there would be an increase in the diversion of waste away from landfill sites towards recycling.

Mkhwanazi said the outcome of the research initiative would be communicated to all stakeholders. He confirmed that Pikitup’s services would be available during the upcoming Easter holidays.

“There will be waste collection during this holiday period, even on Good Friday (April 14). Pikitup will collect waste or refuse and normal street-cleaning activities will be carried out in the inner city, portions of the outer city and Alexandra.”

On Easter Monday (April 17) refuse will be collected in all areas whose collection dates fall on the day.

Mkhwanazi said all Pikitup’s garden sites would be operational during this period. Officials will be available at the sites until noon on these days. However, the sites will be operational until 5pm.

Battling with debt? Guide to managing your debt

If you find yourself relying on debt and not your income to survive every month, it is a sign that you need to evaluate your finances to get financial stability.

 Eunice Sibiya, Head of Consumer Education at FNB says “it may seem hard at the beginning to make changes to your daily routines, but looking at the end goal is encouraging. Therefore, you should carefully re-evaluate your budget and prioritise paying off debt as quickly as possible.”

For consumers who are battling with debt, Sibiya recommends the following measures:

Change the behavior that caused debt problems

 The first step of getting out of debt is looking at what got you into debt. Acknowledge the challenge and evaluate your spending pattern as well as your lifestyle. Once you have done this, cut down on unnecessary expenses and channel the money towards paying debt.

  List all your debts

 List all the creditors you owe, the amount owed and the interest of each debt. Then prioritise your debt either by interest rate or the balance of each debt. In addition, decide how much you can afford to pay a month for each debt. Be realistic about what you can afford and stick to your budget in order to avoid defaulting on any payment.

 “Consider paying a lump sum to one of your debts while still servicing other debts. Once you have paid off one account, channel the money into servicing the other debts so that you can pay it off as quickly as possible,” says Sibiya.

 Set periodic goals 

 Now that you have listed all your debts and have a plan on how you will be paying them off, set a time frame and work towards achieving your goal within the set time.

 “This will require commitment and discipline from start to finish. The desired goal will be rewarding at the end of the hurdle,” says Sibiya.

 Track your progress

 Track your progress every three months. This will allow you to relook your payment plans to see if it is working or not. If the progress is positive, you will be encouraged and driven to look at the long term benefit of being disciplined and committed to a debt free life. 

 “During this challenging journey, avoid taking more debt until you have paid of all your dues. Discipline and commitment will lead you to financial independence,” concludes Sibiya.

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