Unicity mayor-elect`s first unofficial duty

Unicity mayor-elect`s first unofficial duty

9 October 2002

Cape Town Unicity Mayor-elect Nomaindia Mfeketo this morning visited the victims of the fire-ravaged informal settlement of Kosovo in Phillippi, near Cape Town.

In her first unofficial duty as Mayor-elect, Mfeketo said the ANC leadership instructed her to get down to business immediately.

Together with ANC Provincial Chairperson Ebrahim Rasool, Provincial Secretary Mcebisi Skwatsha and Social Development and Poverty Alleviation MEC Marius Fransman, she acquainted herself with the extend of the damage caused by the fires.

About about 300 people were left without accommodation when a fire swept away the informal settlement on Monday evening. They are temporarily being accommodated in a local community hall.

Mfeketo told the community that she wanted to see for herself what the damage was and what can be done about it. She said she will speak to Minister Fransman about the situation to see "what we can contribute together for the families".

She said land must be identified. But also if it means that people must be moved, then it must be done in the interest of saving lives.

But Kosovo is not alone. There are other communities with the same problems. "It`s something we have to look at," Mfeketo said

She expressed her sympathies with those who have lost some of their precious belongings.

Mfeketo urged the community, as they re-build their shacks, to do so to allow enough space for fire and rescue workers to move around freely. This in the interest of their own safety.

She thanked the local councillors and the people involved in putting out the fires, for avoiding loss of life and injury to especially mothers and children.

Commenting on a question from a journalist whether this is the start of her mayoral duties, Mfeketo said: "It`s my first unofficial duty, to listen to the needs of the community. They must feel wherever they are, that their pain is shared by other people."

ANC leader Rasool said Mfeketo is demonstrating a simple, powerful thing that Morkel could never appreciate ­ to express solidarity to poor communities in times of need.

Minister Fransman has said his department was already providing blankets, and was assessing all individuals for R500 grants to alleviate immediate distress.

Skwathsa expressed the ANC`s appreciation to all those who have assisted the community, especially Red Cross, the Salvation Army, Sanzaf and many other individuals.

Mboband Ndima, who has been a resident of the area for five years, expressed his appreciation for the ANC leadership and Mfeketo for visiting the area. He expressed the hope that the new city leadership will be able to provide them with a long-term solution.

Issued by:
ANC Western Cape Communications