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The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Dawid Kruiper believes that the mayor and municipal manager must be held to account for controversy surrounding upgrades to the Dicky Jacobs stadium.
We are not against the idea of upgrading the stadium. We are bursting with pride that Upington City will represent Upington in a higher soccer league, we agree with SAFA that major upgrades are needed, and we look forward to greater recreational opportunities for the youth of Upington.
We however strongly oppose the fact that the municipality intends to use municipal funds from the capital budget which were already set aside for the much-needed procurement of three water trucks as well as machinery for the reseal and repair of roads. We cannot compromise on essential services that affect the health and safety of communities.
The municipality has known for eighteen months that upgrades are needed but failed to source funding. The proposed upgrades are not included in the municipal integrated development plan and there were insufficient public participation processes. As such, it would be a contravention of the Municipal Finance Management Act to proceed with these upgrades.
It is clear that Dawid Kruiper created its own emergency. Now it wants to fix this self-created problem with money it does not have and in a way that does not comply with the law.
As whip, I have said in council that the municipality must approach stakeholders at national and provincial levels to source this funding so that we can provide the kind of stadium that our local team deserves. We must ask the IDT, the Lotto, and other bodies that provide for infrastructure development and sports development to help us in this regard.
The DA will also escalate this matter to our provincial spokesperson for Sport, Arts & Culture to pursue through the Legislature.
Issued by Flip van der Steen, Cllr - DA Whip, Dawid Kruiper Local Municipality