LOOK: KZN small towns hit hard by looting, destruction
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DURBAN – Smaller municipalities outside Pietermaritzburg are now looking to the provincial government for help in resuscitating their towns following last week’s devastating riots, which left a trail of destruction to both public infrastructure and private businesses.
Richmond mayor Samora Ndlovu said that the town had been severely affected.
“The businesses have been badly affected and we await the report that will give the full extent of the damage. It is clear that with the limited budget we will need assistance from province,” the mayor told The Mercury.
UMngeni Municipality spokesperson Thando Mgaga echoed the sentiment that local business has been badly affected both in the town and in Mpophomeni township.
The municipality is made up of areas such as Hilton, Howick, Mpophomeni and other farming areas.
“The mall in Mpophomeni would have celebrated its first-year anniversary next month, but there will not be much to celebrate following the looting,” he said.
Public Service and Administration deputy minister Sindisiwe Chikunga, mayor of uMgungundlovu District Municipality Thobekile Maphumulo, deputy mayor of uMngeni Municipality Nompumelelo Buthelezi and municipal manager for uMngeni Municipality Thembeka Cibane on Tuesday assessed the damage to properties in the town.
Chikunga said the assessment would assist in pushing for government assistance to all the areas they have visited.
Other affected areas include uMshwati, which covers New Hanover and is made up of largely farming communities. Sugar cane plantations were set on fire during the rioting and it remains unclear how many farms were affected.
Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma on Tuesday visited Impendle, which is one of the towns around Pietermaritzburg also affected by the riots.
Attempts to get comment from the Cogta provincial office was unsuccessful at the time of publication.