New Sanral roadworks will create jobs for youth
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Pretoria - Residents in Eersterust and East Lynne have welcomed a road development project that will aid the battle against high youth employment in disadvantaged and “neglected” communities.
It was to an atmosphere of hope and opportunity for the residents, who gathered at the Eersterust Civic Theatre on Friday when the South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) engaged them about construction work set to commence next year.
They turned out in their numbers to learn about the subcontracting, skills transfer and skills development opportunities that lie ahead of the R500 million investment.
It will form part of the R1.2 billion investment that will see work commence in their community and spread towards Mpumalanga as the government works to develop the Moloto Road.
The project will include the construction of a dual carriageway road from Stormvoël Road to Baviaanspoort Road and Moepel Road overpass.
This will include the upgrading of the R573 road and the construction of the PWV2 between the N1/N4 and R573.
There will also be an upgrading of the R573 and Sefako Makgatho Drive, including the construction of the Sefako Makgatho interchange.
Resident Kirshley Marian said: “We are not communities that benefit a lot from development projects, so from a productive and financial point of view this is a project that will help our youth and adults because people really do not have employment here.
“We are a community that struggles with drug dealing, drugs and substance abuse, predominantly because our people have nothing else to do during the day. This will give our youth opportunities and we will be proud to see them go to work in the morning every day.” Community leader and member of the Eersterust Stakeholders Forum Novina Pillay said: “Unfortunately, unemployment is rife in the community and this project by Sanral will give the youth something to do and give them their dignity back.
“We have so many young people who finished school but they are sitting at home and have nothing to do.
“We are pleased to learn that 30% of the labour will come from our community, and this is the time we call on our youth to register businesses and venture into entrepreneurship so that they too can empower each other. This gives us hope for a better tomorrow.”
Sanral stakeholder manager Jullecsia Saul said consulting the community was a good way to give the communities ownership of the project, and from experience it also helped to ensure that the people protected the projects from dodgy disruptors who tried to hijack projects.
“We understand that unemployment is high and we are happy that the people will be able to work as early as March next year.”
She said there would be work from as early as construction site establishment and then followed by sub-contracting opportunities and a lot of skills transfer which would leave the people empowered to start their own businesses or find other employment.