20 YEARS OF DEMOCRACY BUT STILL NO SCHOOL, NO LIBRARY & NO CLINIC
By: Anele Nduzulwana
“We have built 37 new schools; replacing mud schools and other unsuitable structures around the country…We will enter a new phase in the implementation of the National Health Insurance programme which will extend quality health care to the poor.”
These were the words uttered by President Jacob Zuma in a speech leading up to the recent elections.
The reports of successfully built schools and clinics do show progress and growth for South Africa, as a democratic country. Durban has many schools and colleges with students coming from different regions of South Africa to educate themselves. The cities health department also proves to be accountable to its people.
However, despite being 20 years into democracy, the Durban north community of Mount Moriah still struggle with basic service delivery.
Mount Moriah was established outside Phoenix, North of Durban, but lack of public services such as schools, libraries and a clinic make it hard for its residents to celebrate 20 years of democracy.
The area has been in existence for more than 12 years but residents still struggle for public services. Children of grade one level travel more than four kilometers by foot to get to school. Even high school students that travel to school struggle with the distances.
“I use R300 monthly when I go to school with an extra cost for going to the library. It is not easy for me but I have no choice because even though there’s no school in my neighborhood I still have to be educated,” said Tshepo Mngadi, a grade 11 pupil at Rosebank High.
The councilor, Musa Dludla, claims that learners are provided with four school buses which cater for certain schools in the area.
He further emphasized that there has been a plot identified for a school to be built during his time of service as councilor.
“There are delays from the provincial government but the need has been identified. I don’t know when the construction will start,” said Dludla.
Apart from the lack of service delivery, the youth are often found on the streets aimlessly committing various crimes and dealing drugs.
Some have attributed the lack of facilities such as a public hall and sports ground as contributing factors to such negative resolutions.
“Sitting around with nothing better to do can be very boring. In this area there are more taverns than educational activities, hence we resort to alcohol and drugs to keep ourselves entertained,” said 18-year-old matriculant Lindokuhle Nkosi.
Dludla said that it is difficult to build facilities when the youth is not interested. He said that there already is a hall in a nearby township and they are not allowed to build a second hall within the same ward.
By reporting the status of the country, People are informed and given hope for a better future. It becomes disappointing when government fails to deliver.
Whether it is national or provincial government that lacks accountability one cannot be certain, but the people’s very visible struggle proves the democracy enjoyed has been nothing but 20 years of poor service delivery for residents of Mount Moriah.