As part of its contribution to the Eastern Cape Province’s Mandela Day celebrations today, the Eastern Cape Department of Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEDEAT), the Department helped clear five major illegal dumping sites in James Calata (Jamestown).
This clearing is led by one of DEDEAT funded Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) projects on the environment, the R2m Walter Sisulu Local Municipality project for waste management.
This project has created 68 jobs in all the wards of the municipality.
As part of the day’s proceedings, the MEC for DEDEAT, Mr Mlungisi Mvoko handed over contracts to the community members who have been employed through the project.
He implored them to devote themselves to their work and assume full responsibility for cleanliness in the area.
“We expect you to now actively discourage illegal dumping and so when I come back I do not expect to see these illegal dumping sites resurfacing,” added Mr Mvoko.
Speaking after receiving his contract and during the site clearing in one of the dumping sites in James Calata, Emmanuel Khapetse (28 years old) said he is grateful for the job as he is now able to look after his family of 6 (all unemployed) including his 2 years-old son.
Mr Kapetse pleaded with the Department and government, in general, to create more employment opportunities in his town as “Jamestown is a very poor area and consequently a breeding ground for crime”.
This year’s Provincial Mandela Day celebrations were held in Joe Gqabi District, focusing in Venterstad, Burgersdorp, Steynsburg, Maletswai (Aliwal North) and James Calata (Jamestown).
Other activities undertaken and led by other provincial departments include health screening and education; handing over of a house, ablution facility, sanitary towels, wheelchairs, blankets and food parcels.
The delegation and teams were led by various political principals including the Provincial Premier, the Legislature, MECs for DEDEAT, Department of Transport, Education, Rural Development and Agrarian Reform and mayors from the district and local municipalities.
Other activities the Department led include cleaning of open spaces in Jamestown, Burgersdorp and Aliwal North.
The Walter Sisulu LM’s R2m EPWP project is one of the environment projects funded by DEDEAT to the tune of R17.9m across the Province. Combined, these projects will create 750 jobs and were formally announced by MEC Mvoko in the Nelson Mandela Bay late last month, when the Department celebrated the World Environmental Day.
Informed by a vision which is of an Eastern Cape where economic growth and sound environmental management underpin sustainable development, DEDEAT’s mandate is to lead economic development and environmental management in the province.