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Lydenburg potholes – AfriForum steps in

Never mind the R36 (aka “Hell’s Highway”), Lydenburg residents will tell you that they don’t even have to go that far to experience exactly the same kind of car-wrecking potholes. They are right there in their main streets and outside their homes. And, as can well be expected, they are gatvol with the gatte.

Fortunately for pothole-weary Lydenburg residents, the civil rights organisation AfriForum has a very pro-active branch in Lydenburg – and they are seemingly more than willing to take on Thaba Chweu Local Municipality’s (TCLM) backlog of road repairs – all “off their own bat” and at their own expense. At a recent demonstration of just how willing AfriForum are to tackle the problem of potholes on behalf of residents, THG journo’s were shown just how quick and easy it actually is to fix a pothole.

After a brief explanation of the process, Mr. Witte Aucamp, local businessman and owner of E.C. Blaauw, the company hired by AfriForum to do the work, showed just how quickly the average pothole can be repaired. Within minutes, two workers had manually opened up and fully exposed a pothole and cleaned our all the loose soil, etc. Then it was the turn of a single operator wielding a combination hose attachment coupled to a yellow “Jet Patcher 1000” truck. This vehicle uses a combination of water, compressed air and a gravel/bitumen mix. First the now “clean” pothole is sprayed with a liquid sealant, prior to the operator quickly filling the hole with a gravel/bitumen mix delivered under pressure from his hose. After a final spray of liquid bitumen to act as a “top seal”, the hole is filled. He steps back and another operator firmly tamps down the patch and the job is complete. From large hole to repaired – in under 15 minutes.

Mr. Leon de Jager, Chairman – AfriForum, Lydenburg explained why the organisation felt it needed to step in and do what TCLM either cannot or will not: “We have invited the media here today to show how easily problems can be sorted out in Lydenburg. Residents are sick and tired of Thaba Chweu just leaving things to get worse and, if Thaba Chweu won’t fix things, we will,” he said. Tiaan Esterhuizen, Manager: Community Structures for AfriForum, confirmed that AfriForum had spent R24 000 of its own funds to repair a section of Rensburg street in the town to prove that AfriForum was “serious about tackling the problems in Lydenburg on behalf of residents”. Esterhuizen further added that a number of sympathetic mining concerns in the area had, in principle, already agreed to donate R1 in private funding for every R2 spent by TCLM on repairing the roads in order to sort out the problem before the roads became “unrepairaable”.


Mr Tiaan Esterhuizen, Manager: Community Structures for AfriForum

 

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