PUBLIC WORKS BRINGS JUSTICE TO MBUMBULU
By: Nhlanhla Ndlovu
The Minister of Public Works, Thulas Nxesi, laid the first brick in the construction and renovation of the existing Mbumbulu magistrates’ court to be done by July 2015.
The partnership between the Department of Public Works and the police dates back to 1895, when cases were conducted under a tree on ground that the new courthouse be built on.
Nxesi said that they are set to develop rural communities since President Jacob Zuma emphasized the importance of social infrastructure, which includes police stations, courts, schools and clinics.
“We have realised that investment in the social infrastructure has not been at the level where it is suppose to be,” Nxesi said after laying the brick.
Government is willing to spend R30 million on the project, transforming the court room, 12 magistrate and administrative offices, cash office and two holding cells into more appropriate facilities, the Minister revealed.
He said, “We are renovating some of the areas in this very important magistrates’ court of uMbumbulu. We will put in some new buildings.”
Although the department has been linked with corruption scandals, Nxesi assured that they are set to address such issues.
“Public works is known for problems in its construction- you can have a school which takes a period of four to five years to build, or a police station or a court.”
“We have adopted a turn-around strategy, which we are implementing in all our regions. The issue of the financial scandals, the issues of over pricing, poor planning, violation of the supply chain processes in appointing people. We are dealing with those issues,” he said.
The Councillor of Ward 100 areas, Mbuyiseni Mkhize, believes that the renovated version of the court will be helpful, as there was often a baclog of cases.
“Most cases from Mbumbulu were conducted in Durban since our court lacked facilities. The upgrade of this court will help our community a lot,” he said.
He believes that the project is on the right track in terms of operations, since they employ local people.
“The community is happy since some of them are employed in the project,” Mkhize revealed.
The court will be altered and renovated to provide a family court, meeting room, child play area, magistrates rooms, child clerks rooms, domestic violence section, maintenance section, registry section, court managers rooms and five administrative offices.