GEORGE NEWS AND VIDEO - Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula and Western Cape MEC for Transport and Public Works, Bonginkosi Madikizela, held a series of meetings with different George Integrated Public Transport Network (GIPTN) stakeholders regarding the roll-out of Go George Phase 4A and B last week.
The two ministers met with members of Uncedo, George Community Forum and George Link. Some of these meetings were held at the George Municipality's council chambers on Thursday 1 August.
The ministers listened to stakeholders' concerns about the implementation of Phase 4B, which will service Conville, Parkdene, Ballotsview, Borcherds and Lawaaikamp, and Phase A, which will service Thembalethu.
Both ministers acknowledged the delays by government in finding solutions to this matter which has over the past years led to violent protests. Issues such as infrastructure, allegations of corruption, the role of the taxi industry and community development were raised at the meetings.
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Addressing the media after the meeting, Mbalula said all these issues will be looked at and that discussion will continue, starting this week. He said a high-level delegation from the transport department will be deployed in George to look into the matter and that within 45 days a possible solution will be presented.
The ministers also met with the mayor of George, Melvin Naik, who welcomed their intervention. The George Community Forum secretary, Castro Leholo, and chairman Xolisani Booi are also pleased with the ministers' visit and engagement. "This is what we have been waiting for, meaningful engagement with the national and provincial minister. We hope talks will translate into practical solutions," said Booi.
A broader community meeting with residents of Thembalethu had to be postponed, as their other engagements overran. The ministers apologised for the postponement.
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