by Councillor Henning De Wet – DA City of uMhlathuze Councillor
The DA in the City of uMhlathuze has initiated an online petition (view here) calling for the municipality to attend the long and gradual deterioration of the community parks and playgrounds in Ward 3.
Within the first 24 hours, the petition received over 600 signatures. We will officially submit this petition to the municipality on Friday, 05 August 2022.
The number of young families living in this community has greatly increased in recent years, yet disappointingly, there is currently no useable or safe play parks that exists for families within the Ward. In their current condition, these parks remain unusable for the more than 12 600 residents of Ward 3 including the neighbouring schools. The worn and unsafe equipment is a result of decades of neglect by the local municipality.
Just as water, sewerage, and public safety are considered essential public services, parks are vitally important to establishing and maintaining the quality of life in a community, ensuring the health of families and youth, and contributing to economic and environmental well-being.
The condition of public parks and playgrounds further influences residents’ perception of the quality of life in a community and as a result of such well-maintained parks, increases property values.
We have noticed the City of uMhlathuze investing in parks, playgrounds and outdoor gyms in neighbouring communities, yet it is evident that no effort has been made to maintain or upgrade any of the parks in Ward 3 for many years. It is for this reason that we are requesting the City of uMhlathuze to give urgent attention to the parks within Ward 3.
Common issues at the parks:
- Neglected, deteriorated, damaged, and missing playground equipment.
- Poorly maintained and littered landscapes along with overgrown trees.
- No public lighting.
- No public benches.
- Lack of waste bins.
- Poor public safety and law enforcement attract unwanted and often criminal activities such as public drinking and the use of illegal substances.
A DA government in the City of uMhlathuze will get the basics right by investing in infrastructure and reclaiming public spaces currently taken over by lawlessness, litter, and neglect so that they may be once again places for all residents to enjoy.
Residents are urged to join the fight and sign our petition here.