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After many setbacks Durban's Rachel Finlayson pools are almost ready

THE Rachel Finlayson swimming pools at North Beach appeared sparkling yesterday, ahead of the reopening of the facility on Saturday. LEON LESTRADE African News Agency (ANA)

THE Rachel Finlayson swimming pools at North Beach appeared sparkling yesterday, ahead of the reopening of the facility on Saturday. LEON LESTRADE African News Agency (ANA)

Published Dec 18, 2019

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Durban - The refurbished Rachel Finlayson swimming pools are sparkling and finally ready to be reopened to bathers this weekend.

EThekwini Municipality spokesperson Msawakhe Mayisela said the pools had undergone infrastructural repairs since the facility’s closure in August.

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He said the pools were undergoing the final stages of remedial work this week and would be officially reopened to the public on Saturday.

According to information earlier released by the municipality, the latest bout of repairs cost R3million for the laying of pipes to channel water from the ocean to the pool.

Over the past year more than

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R10m has been spent refurbishing the facility.

Initially, renovations started 10 years ago, which included the splitting of the pool into three pools.

Then the pool had to be retiled because darker tiles were used causing visual issues. There were also leaks and issues with piping over the years.

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Pensioner Robert Sinner, who frequents the beachfront, said he was at the pool yesterday morning and although the pools were sparkling clean, he wondered when they would be reopened.

“I was hoping to swim because the beach was a madhouse on Monday,” Sinner said.

DA caucus leader Nicole Graham said there had been progress at the pool but asked “at what cost?”.

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“Why was the pool opened if it wasn’t ready to be opened? Why has it cost so much money and who is going to be accountable for the overall cost?” Graham asked.

IFP caucus leader Mdu Nkosi said the city’s opening of the pool on

Saturday was late because the beaches had been busy since October.

Nkosi alleged that the delay had been caused after contracts were awarded to unqualified people, who produced shoddy work which others needed to fix at a later stage.

“It’s wasting a lot of money and people will eventually lose faith in eThekwini. Not just visitors but locals too,” Nkosi said.

EThekwini Municipality head of parks and recreation, Thembinkosi Ngcobo, said shoddy work could only be spoken about in relation to the last three years of renovations, after the pool had been extensively damaged.

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