Ricochet News

Willowmore residents accuse government of ignoring them

By Afikile Lugunya - Jul 9, 2018
Willowmore residents accuse government of ignoring them

The community of Willowmore, a small Karoo town situated in the Sarah Baartman District Municipality, said that they feel the government is ignoring them.

Armed robberies, unemployment, drug abuse are what the community of Willowmore described as among the problems that they are facing.

“The crime in Willowmore is very high especially in the location, there are many break-ins and robberies.

“I lost a friend at a Tavern. She was stabbed to death,” described 33-year-old Latoya Hartjies..

Latoya said that she still has dreams to be a successful businesswoman, but she does not have the capital.

Her enthusiasm pushed her to get into a building training programme organised by the Department of Human Settlement in the Eastern Cape.

Still, there is little hope for job creation for the town’s young people as Eastern Cape MEC for Human Settlements, Mlungisi Mvoko, said in his speech that the focus of the programme was to equip the women for jobs that may pop up in the future.

He added that creating jobs is not part of the project at the moment, rather to equip young women to be able to stand on their own two feet.

“I think that the government is ignoring Willomore because it is a small town. We need more government jobs and projects here. We rarely get these projects and training conducted by the government,” Latoya described.

She added that the youth of Willowmore have become desperate for anything that would keep them busy that many of them have ended up killing and robbing people in order to find money for drugs.

According to the community members, they had a meeting recently where they discussed ways in which they could eliminate crime in the area.

“There are a lot of taverns in the area and we hope that the Government can help us by closing those that don’t have licences and to help the youth get back on track,” a resident, Jerroleen Jonas, described.

Another resident, Angel Jacobs, added; “In Willowmore, we really need more job creation because the youth are desperate for jobs and they would do anything just to get jobs … they are struggling and some people are using drugs and alcohol, they need more jobs to keep them busy.”

“We need the government to empower more youth because we are living in poverty here. The unemployment rate is too high. We don’t get much work; we just sit at home and many people use drugs, kill people to keep themselves busy,” Mari-Laan Diedericks described.