During a mass meeting held at Hamatsa village on Sunday, 12 November, the attendees agreed that no one from Tshirolwe, Mabirimisa, HaMatsa, Manyii, Mamvuka, and other nearby areas would register to vote for the upcoming elections before the D3741 road was 100% tarred. Photo supplied.
While the whole country is preparing to register to vote for the upcoming 2024 elections this coming weekend, from Saturday (18) to Sunday, 19 November, residents of Tshirolwe, Mabirimisa, HaMatsa, Manyii, Mamvuka, and other nearby areas say they refuse to register or to vote before the D3741 road is completely tarred.
The dissatisfied communities are complaining that only 1.2 km of the 15 km road was tarred in 2017, while the other 13.8 km had been covered with concrete-like rocks. Motorists and emergency services have complained on many occasions about the road’s not being usable.
During a mass meeting held at Hamatsa village on Sunday, 12 November, the communities agreed that no one from the area was going to register to vote this coming weekend. The affected villages have about 70,000 residents, all of whom have to make use of the D3741 road on a daily basis to go to work, school, or do their shopping at nearby CBDs, such as Louis Trichardt, Biaba, Musina, or Siloam.
According to the deputy chairperson of the Road D3741 community forum, Mr Khathutshelo Simon Matsa, the untarred road has a negative effect on development in these villages. “Nobody wants to bring development to a place where there are no reliable roads. Even companies in town do not want to employ people from these villages because they might fail to get to work on time due to transport.”
Matsa said the communities had been begging the government to construct a proper road since 2012. “They have been giving us nothing but empty promises. They told us that, when the first phase was 70% complete, Road Agency Limpopo would take over and finish the road. We also tried taking the matter to the Public Protector, Adv Busisiwe Mkhwebane, but she also failed to help us. Now we are tired. We are going to deal with them in the ballots,” he said.
In response to this complaint, Road Agency Limpopo responded, saying: “The current status is that a consultant engineer has recently been appointed for this project and processes are still underway. A project manager is also yet to be assigned. The project is still in the beginning phases,” the spokesperson said.
Date:18 November 2023
Maanda Bele, born and raised in Nzhelele Siloam, studied journalism at the Tshwane University of Technology.
He is passionate about current news and international affairs.
He worked as part of the Zoutnet team as an intern in 2017.
He is currently a freelance journalist specialising in news from the Vhembe district.