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Ward 97 informal settlement a no-man’s-land

RUIMSIG – Ward 97 councillor Leah Knott has suggested that the City of Joburg talk with the Mogale municipality to resolve demarcation crisis.

RUIMSIG – Demarcation complications have left some Ward 97 residents puzzled regarding which municipality they fall under.
The cross-municipality issue involving the City of Joburg and Mogale City Local Municipality has been affecting residents, especially those who have lived on the ward’s border and in informal settlements for a very long time.
The residents have alleged that both municipalities point fingers at each other when residents seek services. Community leader Gcobani Mashiyi confirmed to Roodepoort Northsider that some houses in the informal settlement in Ruimsig lie on the boundary of Mogale City. But most residents believe they fall under the City of Joburg because they voted in Ruimsig.

“If you check the demarcation map of Ward 97, you find that there are some houses that fall under Ward 97 and those that fall outside of the ward. During local government elections, about two-thirds of [informal settlers] voted in Ruimsig,” he said.

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Mashiyi said voting in Ruimsig was a ‘clear indication that those people fall under the boundaries of Ward 97’. The unresolved issue has left the residents without electricity and proper water and sanitation, among other important services.

Ward 97 councillor Leah Knott said, “[The demarcation crisis] has always been an issue. I think during the previous administration, the councillor made an arrangement with the City of Joburg to provide services for the settlement. They then placed the settlement on the Joburg list. Now the problem is that they are sitting with cross municipalities.”

Knott suggested that the City of Joburg engage the Mogale municipality to resolve the crisis. Nkosana Zali, spokesperson for the Mogale Local Municipality, said the entire settlement should be considered for incorporation into the City of Joburg and upgraded, since the bigger portion of the settlement falls under them.

“Almost half of the Ruimsig informal settlement falls under Mogale City and the rest of it falls under, and is owned by, the City of Joburg,” he said. He rubbished claims that Mogale City was reluctant to help residents from the informal settlement. “We have not turned anyone away. We provide any assistance requested and available,” Zali said.

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