Van Rooyen urges Vuwani communities not to boycott elections
Fri, 22 Jul 2016 18:29:36
Co-Operative Governance Minister Des Van Rooyen is urging communities who are unhappy on various issues to reconsider their stance that they will not be voting in the August municipal elections.
Van Royeen has met the concerned Vuwani traditional leaders at Dzanani, outside Louis Trichardt.
Some community structures in the area have vowed not to allow the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) to operate in the area due to the municipal demarcation stalemate.
Van Rooyen says protesting communities should not violate the rights of others.
In a caucus meeting that was held between the Vuwani traditional leaders and the inter-ministerial team the members of Pro-Makhado have instructed their traditional leaders who are led by Chief Nthumeni Masia not to sign the agreement.
They are maintaining their stance that normalcy will not be restored until the municipal demarcation board’s decision is reversed.
As far as the issue of the elections is concerned, we want to urge our people that they should allow all the people to vote.
Minister Van Rooyen and his provincial counterpart Makoma Makhurupetse met with the traditional leaders who are now divided on whether to call off the protest in Vuwani.
The protest action is in its third month. Schooling and provision of other services have been brought to a halt.
Van Royeen has urged communities not to boycott the upcoming municipal elections. He says all people should be allowed to cast their votes without any disruption.
“As far as the issue of the elections is concerned, we want to urge our people that they should allow all the people to vote. At the same time we want to say to them if they do not exercise this right themselves they are denying themselves an opportunity to elect the leaders who will represent them. The person will represent them and engage with us as we solve their problems we want them to re-consider this position of not going to vote and elect leaders of their choice,” says van Rooyen.
The concerned traditional leaders from Vuwani say they are still going to engage with their subjects on the latest offer by government.
Some community structures do not want to sign an agreement that will see the protest action suspended until after the municipal elections.
Spokesperson for the traditional leaders Nthumeni Masia says they are still to brief their subjects on the latest development over the demarcation stalemate.
“Obviously after these kind of engagements we shall engage our respective subjects to bring them on board on the kind of discussion we have had with government so that they appreciate or raise fears if any on the process. This is because the ultimate objection is to solve the problem either way as soon as this problem become history in the near future,” says Masia.
Members of Pro-Makhado, a community structure that does not want their areas to be incorporated into the new municipal entity, have vowed to continue with their protest until the municipal demarcation board’s decision is reversed.
They have committed to allow schooling to start on the fourth of next month.
More than 50 000 learners have missed three months of learning time at more than 100 schools in Vuwani.
About 2000 matric learners had to be taken to three camps where a catch up program for them is underway.