The City of Cape Town has warned communities against rogue development forums delaying infrastructure projects intended to uplift poor communities.
According to the City these rogue groups demand, extort, and threaten City contractors who are being paid with public money to build houses and roads.
“At least one major infrastructure project has been delayed for several weeks now, at great cost to the City and ratepayers, because the City contractor is not being allowed to continue work unless the group’s demands for favours and donations are being met,” the City said in a statement.
The Stock Road infrastructure project in Philippi, which is part of the roll-out of Phase 2A of the MyCiTi bus service to the Cape Flats, came to a standstill three weeks ago because the contractor has not been permitted to return to the site.
“The company is being pressured to agree to the so-called ‘development forum’ demands for a ‘legacy’.
Temporary work opportunities
In the meantime, local residents from Philippi are missing out on the temporary work opportunities provided through this project.
The City says that it is not permissible for so-called ‘community leaders’, ‘forums’, or politicians to get involved with, or to demand favours from, City contractors.
“All City contracts dictate that contractors provide local residents with temporary work opportunities and on-the-job training.
“These processes are regulated by several City policies, as well as national legislation, to ensure that goods and services are acquired through a competitive and transparent process.
Contractors should not accede to demands
“While local community representatives and forums are informed of the temporary work opportunities available, community groups are not permitted to dictate their own particular requirements directly to the contractor.
“Likewise, no City contractor should accede to any demands imposed upon them by those claiming to represent the community,” the city concludes.