Ricochet News

Glenmore community still without stadium after R3 million upgrade, Mayor admits mistakes

By Afikile Lugunya - May 5, 2018
Glenmore community still without stadium after R3 million upgrade, Mayor admits mistakes

Glenmore, a village 20km outside Peddie towards Grahamstown, remains without an accessible community sports facility despite the Ngqushwa Local Municipality reportedly having spent nearly R3 million to refurbish it.

A contractor was appointed for the refurbishment project in 2016 yet the facility has been closed for over a year and local residents claim they have not been able to use the stadium ever since the refurbishments were done.

According to a report by non-governmental organisation Afesis-Corplan, at the heart of the Glenmore stadium debacle lies the fact that the community with a history of sporting tournament hosting and an active youth is without a sporting facility as a result of poor workmanship by the contractor that was meant to refurbish the stadium.

Afesis-Corplan says that the tender documents for the sportsfield show that it was to have a new gate house, new male and female VIP ablution facilities, new change rooms, new netball court, new basketball court, new grandstands, new athletics track, refurbished pitch for soccer and rugby, irrigation systems and water fountain.

However when Afesis-corplan visited the field this year, they found that poor workmanship had resulted in a building with structural defects and the sports fields had not been properly grassed.

The defects included, among others, an open hole in the ceiling of the changing room; roof leakages; visible cracks in the wall; windows that have been vandalised; uneven floor surfaces; inconsistent tiling; and spectators’ stands that were unstable and not safe for use. Furthermore the guard house next to the main gate had no window.

Ngqushwa Local Municipality Executive Mayor, Mnikelo Siwisa, this week acknowledged receiving a community petition, which was received on the 25th of April and has assured the community that upgrades to the field will be finished and communicated to residents.

"I am urgently attending to complaints about the state of the Glenmore Sports facility," Siwisa said in a statement on Thursday.

"Community members have protested Glenmore’s disrepair and I have noted media reports on the state of the facilities, and on community dissatisfaction and anger.

"I acknowledge the Glenmore Community petition received on 25 April asking for action to repair and upgrade the sports field, and for clear communication of the process."

The Mayor said that the community may be assured that "I will see that Glenmore be restored to the original specifications and maintained for the continued use of all who wish to use the facilities".

"To this end Council has resolved, on 26 March already, that a forensic investigation be conducted to determine any and all failures that may have resulted in, or contributed to the current problem. The results of this investigation will be communicated and the data will be used to best prevent similar delivery problems in future. The contractor has pledged support for this investigation and will cooperate in the process," Siwisa described.

"Council also resolved to allocate funds in the 2018/19 budget to restitute Glenmore for sustainable use and enjoyment by the community.

"The department of rural development and agrarian reform has already tested and analysed the soil to determine the most suitable grass for maintenance in order to provide optimal coverage and ensure responsible water usage. The municipality has only just received the test results and will incorporate the data in the restoration plan."

He added that the municipality is committed to service delivery and will continue to strive for best-fit solutions to satisfy specific community needs and wants.

"Although mistakes can never be completely avoided, the municipality pledges that errors will be identified, with the help and assistance of the community, and that such mistakes will be rectified in order to best serve the community and to learn to avoid other mistakes. This cooperative relationship between the municipality and the community will continue to improve service delivery," the Mayor said.

"I thank the people of Ngqushwa for their interest and support and I emphasise that my office will continue to respond to community problems and needs."

Image: Afesis-Corplan