Jacob Mamabolo defuses potential war between Nellmapius residents, taxi drivers
Pretoria - MEC FOR Public Transport and Roads Infrastructure Jacob Mamabolo’s intervention has defused a potentially dangerous war between Mamelodi taxi drivers and residents of Nellmapius Extension 22 RDP houses.
The residents had blocked Solomon Mahlangu Drive for three days demanding electricity. They were allocated the 1 300 houses in 2016. From Saturday to Monday, the residents blocked the busy Solomon Mahlangu Drive to express their unhappiness. However, they were confronted by taxi drivers, who fired shots and demanded that they reopen the road.
The residents also shut down the construction revamp of Solomon Mahlangu Drive. Co-operative Governance, Traditional Affairs and Human Settlements MEC Lebogang Maile has been at loggerheads with contractor Vharanani Properties, tasked with building the houses.
The service provider was unable to finish the work due to some administration and design challenges that led to the collapse of the contract. However, the contractor, in litigation, blamed the government for the planning and designs that caused the delays.
Mamabolo engaged all stakeholders, including the leaders of the Mamelodi Amalgamated Taxi Association and their administrator Hettie Groenewald, City of Tshwane, Maile’s department and community leaders. He said: “To deal with this matter, the province committed to terminating the contract by May 7 and hand over the project to the City of Tshwane. Electricity will then be connected.
“The people committed that they would not block the road again and will refrain from damaging roads infrastructure as we fast-track this process.
“Here we have stopped a potentially dangerous war and we are happy that no matter what allegedly happened, no one was injured as far as we know.”