Down Touch, the contractor in the construction of the Rusfontein to Laxey road could fail to meet its completion target due to a community rift over employment opportunities in the project.
A visit by the Kathu Gazette on August 30, 2017 on the site at Pepsi, revealed that the contractor had resumed work the previous day after three weeks of stop-page as the community from various vil-lages are in dispute for employment op-portunities.
Secondly, the community said the con-tractor was not introduced to them and only saw the road works beginning at their village. The community also queried the stationing of the contractor's offices at ward eight, a preferred choice by the contractor.
Narrating the whole story at the con-cerned Pepsi village was Ms Thabang Moyo, a member belonging to a group called the Concerned Community led by Gomolemo Golesetedi.
Another group, called Community, led by community liaison officer (CLO) Mr Vincent Oupa Mosimanyana from ward nine where construction work started two years ago, is still in charge.
During the initial agreement of the pro-ject, a CLO has to be from the village where construction is taking place, hence Mr Mosimanyane was employed from ward nine in the ten kilometre road construction.
A consensus was reached at some point that he had done good work and therefore he was allowed to proceed with his work for ward eight. However, the Pepsi community felt that Mr Mosiman-yana had come with his preferred people
from wards nine and eight for the construction of the ward eight and Pepsi portions.
The Pepsi community felt be-trayed by the decision and took to the streets, leading to the work stoppage. This necessitated the Pepsi community to choose their own community liaison officer, Mr Gomolemo Golesetedi, at a joint meeting at the Joe Morolong local municipality on August 25, 2017. The two CLOs will have to work to-
gether to normalise the situation.
Ms Thabang said that on May 30, 2017 a mayoral steering com-mittee was chosen to look into the affairs of hiring people to avoid conflict, but this was not adhered to, leading to the eventual may-hem.
The mayor, Councillor Dineo Le-utlwetse and her executive com-mittee members met the commu-nity and an amicable solution was reached.
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