Municipality helps learners find their career paths

Kouga Municipality helps learners find their career paths

Over a thousand high school learners from Kouga attended a career expo on Tuesday, aimed at helping the young ones through the ordeal of choosing career paths.

The event, held at the Humansdorp Country Club, was an initiative of Kouga Municipality’s Local Economic Development and Skills Development sections.

It was organised by the Services Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA), together with their peers in other sectors and government departments.

Speaking at the programme, Planning, Development and Tourism Portfolio Councillor Bryan Dhludhlu said although the municipality couldn’t recruit everyone to be its employees, the municipality had a responsibility to make known the opportunities available at other government departments and agencies.

“We need to know what the needs and aspirations of our future adult residents are in order for us to provide the necessary support to them so that they can thrive in their careers and be proud of where they come from,” he said

The career expo targeted learners from Grades 9 to 12, with the Department of Basic Education (DBE) wanting to expose learners to career pathing at early stages.

“We have observed with concern how learners tend to change subjects as they progress to higher grades due to a lack of clarity about which careers they would like to pursue after school.

Attending the Services SETA’s career expo in Humansdorp were (from left) Department of Basic Education Head for the Humansdorp Circuit Management Centre Sipho Miggels, Kouga Planning, Development and Tourism Portfolio Councillor Bryan Dhludhlu, PR Councillor Robin Jantjies, Services SETA’s Senior Manager for Provincial Operations Vusi Nkosi and Executive Manager for Stakeholder Relations Miki Ndhlovu.

Press Release – Kouga Municipality Media Liaison 

Sea Vista residents finally receive Title Deeds

Ten-year wait for title deeds finally over for Sea Vista residents

The mood was festive in Sea Vista on Tuesday when 90 residents received the title deeds to their houses.

Sea Vista residents wait in anticipation to receive the title deeds to their homes.

“This is a huge day for me,” said an elated Audrey George. “I now have a title deed, with my name on it, that proves my house belongs to me.”

Eva Visagie (second right) and her grandson, Chadley Visagie (left) thank Mayoral Committee members Brenton Williams and Frances Baxter for delivering her title deed to her.

The programme was led by Mayoral Committee members Brenton Williams and Frances Baxter, who first visited three of the eldest beneficiaries at their homes to hand-deliver their title deeds before moving to the Sea Vista Community Hall to distribute the remainder.

“All these beneficiaries received their houses more than 10 years ago, in 2007, but the previous regime withheld their title deeds. We are here to set that right,” said Williams.

He said the Sea Vista title deeds were among the almost 2000 title deeds that the former Council had failed to hand over to housing beneficiaries. As a DA-led municipality, we believe that by giving people their title deeds, you give them rightful ownership and a means of becoming actively involved in the economy.”

“Late Mayor Elza van Lingen started this process in Thornhill on Human Rights Day when she handed over 257 title deeds. Mayor Horatio Hendricks then took it further on Nelson Mandela Day when he handed over 631 title deeds in Kruisfontein. Today we are in Sea Vista doing the same and at the end of the month we will be in KwaNomzamo to hand over more title deeds.”

The beneficiaries were further encouraged to ensure that they have a will that specifies who should inherit the house in the event of their passing.

“Many residents asked for help in this regard. Our officials will, therefore, be returning to Sea Vista this week to help those who requested assistance,” Williams said.

Thandeka Nieveldt (seated) and her grandchildren, Tammy Nieveldt (3) and Joslyn Majola (9), celebrate her receiving her title deed. It was hand-delivered to her home by (from left) Mayoral Committee Members Brenton Williams and Frances Baxter, supported by municipal officials Noel Kurat, Ashley Williams and Nico Prinsloo.


Bottled water as taps run dry at Hankey

Municipality distributes bottled water as taps run dry at Hankey 

Kouga Municipality has started distributing bottled water to Hankey as many households in the town have not had access to tap water at all, even during the advertised hours. Mayor Horatio Hendricks said that despite the introduction of water rationing, Hankey was still using more than its allocation.

“This means that more water is being extracted from the reservoir than is flowing in. As a result, some households, especially those in high-lying areas, have not had access to tap water at all.”

Affected residents are invited to pick up one 5 litre bottle per household per day from the Vusumzi Landu Hall or Hankey municipal offices. Water can also be collected from the rainwater tanks that were installed earlier this year. According to the latest figures,

  • Hankey used a total of 8471kl last week, from 6 to 12 August, which is still more than the weekly allocation of 6057kl.
  • Patensie used less than its quota during the first week of “watershedding. A total of 5040kl of water was used compared to the weekly quota of 5761kl.

“We know it hasn’t been easy for the affected communities,” said Hendricks.

“There are households at Hankey where very little or no tap water has been available, even during the advertised hours, because the water is extracted from the pipes faster than they can fill up when the supply is turned on.  The usage in this town has also been above the quota, which contributes to the shortages as the Gamtoos Irrigation Board turns off the supply once the quota has been reached. We would like to appeal to residents to minimise how much water they use when the supply is restored so that the pipes can fill up and the supply reach more households.”

Meanwhile, donations have started pouring in for the drought-stricken communities.

“Companies and organisations from across the country have been in contact with us to say that they would like to donate water,” he said.

“The first big donation, from Dischem’s offices in Cape Town, arrived on Tuesday. We would like to thank them for showing such amazing compassion for the communities of Hankey and Patensie.”

Those who would like to donate bottled water can contact Gert Kruger at the municipality’s Infrastructure and Engineering Department on 081 528 3721 to arrange delivery.

The level of the Kouga Dam level stood at 6,88% on Tuesday, 14 August. This is a slight improvement from the 6,73% on Friday thanks to the weekend’s rain.   

New bakkies to boost service delivery

11 new bakkies set to strengthen  service delivery

Kouga Infrastructure and Engineering Portfolio Councillor Freddy Campher (third from left) receives one of the new Nissan bakkies from BB Auto Commercial Brand Manager Charles Baker. With him are St Francis Bay Acting Foreman for water Xolile Skosana (inside the van), Kouga Speaker Hattingh Bornman, Special Worksman Isaak Coenraad and Humansdorp Algoa Nissan General Manager Pierre du Plessis.

The Kouga Municipal fleet has received another boost, with 11 new bakkies set to strengthen the institution’s service delivery departments.

The one-ton Nissan light delivery vehicles (LDVs) were picked up from Humansdorp’s Algoa Nissan on Tuesday. The total cost of the bakkies is almost R3,6 million.

Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks said aging municipal vehicles impeded service delivery and that replacing the fleet was one of the priorities for the municipality’s leadership.

“We were shocked after we took over as the new Council in 2016 to learn that only 4% of the municipality’s vehicles were fully operational while the remainder were constantly breaking down and 58 were no longer working at all,” he said.

He said the new leadership immediately set out to replace the dysfunctional fleet systematically in order to meet the needs of communities.

Eight of the bakkies will be given to the Water and Sewerage teams. Two will be used by the Electrical section while the Corporate Services directorate will, after many years, also have a new set of wheels to play their role as a support department effectively. .

“We are confident that this will help curb unnecessary delays and improve our response time to service delivery complaints,” said Hendricks.

Kouga Property Valuations Objections Finalised

Kouga Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks said all property owners who submitted objections should by now have received the results of the process.

“If you submitted an objection to the valuation of your property and have not received correspondence notifying you of the outcome, we ask that you please contact our Valuations Department at Jeffreys Bay. Please have your objection number ready, as staff will need this to trace your submission.”

He said that should property owners be dissatisfied with the outcome of their objection, they would now have the option to appeal. The deadline for the submission of appeals is September 3.

Just more than 300 property owners from the Kouga region submitted objections to the new valuations of their properties.

The new General Valuation Roll came into effect on July 1, 2018, and will determine how much property owners are expected to pay for rates and taxes in the coming year.

Hendricks said the total value of the new roll is R 27,3 billion.

Weekly roadblocks to bring traffic offenders to book

  The Kouga Traffic Department will be conducting weekly roadblocks throughout the region.

Community Services Portfolio Councillor Daniel Benson said the primary goal would be to check for outstanding fines and execute warrants of arrest.

“A fully-equipped mobile unit will be used to check drivers’ and vehicles’ information during these operations,” he said.

“Thanks to this mobile technology, it only takes a few seconds to check if someone has an outstanding fine or whether a warrant of arrest has been issued for them.”

Persons with warrants of arrest against them will be able to pay on the spot or they will face imprisonment, he warned.

A warrant of arrest is issued when an offender fails to appear in court following the issuing and service of a summons against them.

Benson said people with outstanding camera fines would also have the option of paying these fines at the roadblocks.

A card facility will be available on site.

“We want to make sure our roads our safe and will, therefore, continue to enforce a zero-tolerance approach to lawlessness on the roads,” he said.

“Law enforcement will be intensified on all our roads and these operations will take place on a weekly basis.”