22 June BCMM SOMA 2017 June 22, 2017 By Tabisa Mntengwana Latest News 0 The State of the Metro Address is held at Abbotsford Christian Centre, the day kicked off with a Media Lock-Up at the East London City Hall at 8:30am. Watch the SOMA live https://youtu.be/CsGNRySkX9c Also, follow us on Facebook (Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality), Twitter (@OfficialBCMM) and listen live on Keith Ngesi Radio (www.keithngesiradio.com) and www.bcmmnews.co.za #BCMMSOMA17 Today's SOMA will be the first in local government to hoist both the SA's National Flag alongside the AU flag and to sing both anthems respectively. Related 2017 BCMM Agricultural Show The BCMM Agricultural Show was a two-day event which began from 20-21September 2017. Day one consisted of information sharing. Speakers gave talks on topics such as markets as well exports. Potential investors and agricultural companies were also invited to make presentations. Day two consisted of demonstrations of exhibition of stalls. Farmers with produce were judged on the day by judges based on how they presented their work. Speaking about the programme Portfolio Head for Local Economic Development Pumla Nazo said, “The programme seeks to acknowledge, encourage and increase the participation of emerging farmers in agricultural sector. The major thrust of this programme is to underline the fact that the emerging farmers play a significant role in food security, job creation, economic growth and poverty alleviation”. “The programme has a long term ambition to leveraged emerging farmers from subsistence and small holder producers to commercial entrepreneur who will also venture in to export market,” she said. The categories that they were judged on comprised of; · Fresh produce farmers · Grain produce farmers · Livestock farmers (small & large) · Poultry farmers · Beadwork · Hand work and · Home industry According to a Municipal Report, the aim and objectives of the agricultural show are: · To provide an environment for all those involved in agricultural development to exhibit their products · To disseminate information on agricultural products for which there is a potential in the City, as well as ways and means for their piloting. · To attract presenters from large-scale corporate buyers of agricultural produce to learn their requirements. · To engage agricultural stakeholders from outside the City to learn different approaches and best practices for agricultural development. · To promote the concept of agro-processing and to introduce possibilities for “home-industry” processing as a means to learn basic methods in preparation for future industrial scale processing. · To engage trade suppliers as potential exhibitors of equipment and inputs. · To attract interest of potential investors in agricultural development from inside and outside the City. The winners for the day each received a cheque for the presentation of their work. The third price which was taken by Cameroon was R10 000, followed by Lesotho in the second place and received R20 000 and lastly the winner of the day was South Africa who received an amount of R30 000 for taking first place. SONA Activations 2017 Activities kicked off with a train ride from East London, passing Mdantsane and the last stop was Berlin on February 2. The main activity was to distribute government information products which include SONA leaflets, newsletters, general government information leaflets and interacting with people about their expectation from the upcoming SONA and about service delivery in general. This programme was one of the pre-SONA activations intended to create awareness about the upcoming State of the Nation Address scheduled for 9 February 2017. The theme for SONA 2017 is The year of Oliver Reginald Tambo: Unity in Action Together Moving South Africa Forward. Speaking to one of the train commuters from East London to Berlin, Bayambela Sifumba said, “I am concerned with how the government plans to deal with issues of unemployment and service delivery in our community.” According to the GCIS website (www.gcis.co.za), the President will provide an update on the implementation of the Programme of Action based on the National Development Plan (NDP). The 2017 SONA will also be delivered within the context of the current strides made by government to respond to the various challenges that our country is facing. Public Participation Practitioner Kenneth Kodwa said, “We set out to share information with the public about the SONA, we acknowledge the importance of community involvement in sound governance and also in keeping with the Batho Pele principals.” The public is encouraged to participate in discussions on Facebook (GovernmentZA) and Twitter on the hashtag #SONA2017 Other activation events include a radio debate amongst school pupils from two high schools in Duncan Village namely Kusile and Sinovuyo High on Kumkani FM, 6 February and a dialogue session with the community that will be held in Berlin 8 February. The SONA will be broadcast live on television, radio and social media from 7pm on February 9. 2017 Standard Bank Ironman 70.3 The East London’s superb location, nestled in the incredible coastal area makes it a perfect host for this testing exceptional race. This year, the race is expected to pull more pro-athletes from around the world including defending champions, Jodie Swallow and Matt Trautmann. The Metro’s Executive Mayor Xola Pakati said that he is delighted that the City hosts the prestigious event each year. “As hosts of such an important sporting event, Buffalo City receives international and local compliments. The event gives the city an opportunity to show the world the true South African hospitality as well as boosting tourism and adding to the economy of the City,” said Pakati. “Buffalo City is ready to host the 2017 edition of the Ironman 70.3 and we are looking forward to the spectacular race.” The race kicks off at 7am with a 1.9km swim at East London's Orient Beach, the swim’s first leg will be 300 metres long, the marker must be rounded on the right hand side (marker must be on your left). After turning left around this buoy the next leg is 700 metres, this buoy must also be rounded on the right hand side. The following leg is 200 metres long and again you must round the buoy on the right. The final leg before the exit to the beach is 500 metres long and you need to round this last buoy on the left. The exit to the beach is 200 metres away. The cut-off time for the swim is one hour and 10 minutes. Following the swim is a 90 kilometre cycle on the N2 Highway. The first portion is along the Esplanade (beach front) where after the route follows the R72 motorway towards the Nahoon River. The route then turns left and follows the N2 highway towards King William’s Town. It is a continuous climb with a few flat sections to the turnaround point at Berlin just outside East London at 45 kilometres. The return route is on the opposite side of the N2 highway back to transition. Aid Stations will be available at the 18 kilometre, 45 kilometre and 72 kilometre marks. The cut-off time for the cycle is four hours and five minutes. The last leg is the 21.1 kilometre run around the Esplanade. Triathletes run down the Esplanade, passing the Orient Theatre and along the eastern Esplanade up into John Bailie Road towards Schenker Road. The route turns back on the second loop of the race which also goes out on the pier before turning around to the finishing line. According to the race’s legend John Duke, who started competing in the Ironman events in 1982, the race is anybody’s game and anybody can claim the title and be the Ironman. "People who think that the title is unattainable, I tell them that it is possible. I can take a person that does not have an athletic bone in their body and make them into a triathlete if they’re willing to put in the time. I’m the perfect example. I am not a great athlete, just a hard worker." Residents should also note that there will be road closures: Entrance to the Orient Beach Complex will be closed to all public and vehicles from Friday 27 January to Tuesday 31 January 2017 The following road closures will apply on Sunday 29 January 2017 from 6am until 1pm. On the N2, it will be closed from Beacon Bay offramp (Exit 1051) to Blaney intersection. While on the NEX / R72, the road will be closed from Buffalo Park Drive to Wyse Avenue (Christian Centre intersection) from 6am until 5pm. At Currie Street / Esplanade Street it will be closed from Orient Road to John Bailie Road. Other road closures include the John Bailie Road, Turnberry Avenue, Glen Eagles Road, Galway Road and Epsom Road Intersection Gavle and BCMM strengthen ties Executive Mayor Councillor Xola Pakati with the delegation will be at the East London ICC this morning to discuss various issuses including youth issues, gender equality issues and human rights roles. During the session, there will be presentation by BCMM (Youth engagement project); Commission for Gender equality (issues of discrimination); Human Rights Commission (Roles). After lunch there will be visits to the East London Harbour, Nahoon Point Boardwalk, East London Museum and the Masimanyane Women’s Centre. The twinning relations between the two Cities were initiated in 2002 with the aim to strengthen local democracy, expand knowledge and capacity development as well as to improve competence among the parties in their developmental roles as service providers. The sister Cities have cooperatively implemented projects with the fundamental objective to address underlining issues amongst others, that focus on; local democracy, governance and administration, technical municipal services (waste management, energy, water and sewerage), environmental/climatic issues, sustainable urban development, social welfare operations, education, youth projects and health and medical care operations. From June 2017 the City of Gavle and BCMM jointly implemented the following projects: · Steering Group Project which initiated in 2016 and programmed to carry over to 2018, focusing on matters of discrimination in both cities. · Youth Project also initiated in 2016 and planned to carry over 2018, aimed to enhance and create youth development opportunities for youth in both cities. The Metro in this regard has since piloted six Social Labs which are a ward based multi-stakeholder response for vulnerable groups to proactively engage in Integrated Development Planning Processes. Prayer for rain in BCMM On the 28th of June 2017, Council took a resolution to implement the first stages of water restrictions as per the Dam Operating Rules. Unfortunately, the recent rains have done nothing to save the situation and the City is now predicting an imminent drought situation. Consequently, the Wriggleswade dam, which is the backup dam for the City, has its levels declining at a rate of 1.6% per week, which means the municipality would be in the drought situation from the end of October 2017 if the rainfall does not materialise in the month of September and October 2017. The Wriggleswade dam was activated after the City’s main dam the Bridle Drift and Nahoon Dams suppliers dams that supply water to East London, Mdantsane and surrounding areas recorded lowest levels below 40 percent. The Department of Water and Sanitation started to release raw water from Wriggleswade Dam from the 1st of June 2017 as per the dam operating rules for the Amathole System in order to supplement raw water supply to Bridle Drift and Nahoon Dams. The Metro in its efforts to raise awareness of the crisis, resorted to praying for rain on Sunday 24 September with the Executive Mayor Xola Pakati visiting the Immaculate Conception Parish Catholic Church in East London CBD to join Father Peter Whitehead in prayer for rain as the nation faces drought. Recent rains have done little to alleviate dam levels. Pakati said, “Our dam levels are very low, our animals are suffering due to the scarcity of food. We are grateful for the space created for us to pray against the drought.” Speaking to the congregation of the Catholic Church Pakati said that we need to come together as the City in an effort to save water and reduce the misuse of water in order to have more water in the years to come. The City released a media statement calling on its residents to use water cautiously as there are strong possibilities that we are heading for drought. In the upcoming Mayoral Imbizos which will be held early next month in King Williams Town, Mdantsane, East London and Ncerha, the Municipality will also be using the occasion to pray for rain together with all religious devotions. Roads rehabilitation in BCMM Residents of Mdantsane are in for their share of development as the Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality is announcing the commencing of a R117 million roads project starting next week. Locals are advised that as from 03 October 2017 until the end of November 2017, the City will be rolling the improvement of Qumza Highway which involves rehabilitation and widening of Qumza Highway on both sides to a dual carriageway. The road is currently 6.8 meters wide and will be upgraded to 16 meters wide with a barrier median. The Qumza multi phased highway project, which started in October 2015 will see its phase 7 consisting of a construction of the section of the road between NU6 Mall main entrance to the Sasol Garage near Fort Jackson. Motorists are advised to make use of alternative routes where possible and to exercise caution when travelling the work areas. (see map attached) The project is estimated to create 50 employment opportunities to local community and local SMME’s will be used on the construction components. Projects of this nature also have economic spin offs as businesses are attracted by a smooth road infrastructure network. Due to the narrow road, Qumza Highway has seen a high volume of head-on collisions and vehicle-pedestrian conflict. The section of road is being upgraded to alleviate traffic congestion and improve safety for road users. Other factors of concern include the lack of pedestrian facilities, lack of signage, poor lighting, continued flooding of cross-culverts due to heavy rains, potholes due to the failing condition of the pavement structure and lack of intersection control during peak hours. The overall project will see an extensive scope of work done that will take 18 months to complete. This work will include the following: · Accommodation of traffic by deviating on local parallel roads, · Removing of existing surfacing and layer works, · Relocation of existing minor services such as overhead electrical services, sewer and bulk water supply services. · Removal of pipe culverts. · Widening of the road prism. · Construction of minor earth retaining structures. · Installation of traffic signalization and street lighting · Installation of road furniture including guardrails and road traffic signage. In recent months, the City has turned the Metro into a construction site investing in infrastructure projects like Fleet and Oxford streets; Quenera-Beacon Bay Link road at R70, 3 million, rehabilitating bridges in Beacon Bay and launching several bulk infrastructure projects that includes housing handovers, electrification of settlements, major treatment works like Umzonyana; Zwelitsha Water Treatment at R223 million; R200 pipe and water meter replacement program. Comments are closed.