Premier Alan Winde engages with Velddrif Business Chamber ahead of SOPA
Media release by Premier Alan Winde on engagement with Velddrif Business Chamber ahead of SOPA
With just 5 days to go until the Official Opening of Parliament and the State of the Province Address (SOPA) in Velddrif, I had the opportunity to engage with the Velddrif Business Chamber last night. During which, I outlined 8 programmes that will benefit the town and the greater West Coast district in the coming year and beyond.
These programmes will enhance infrastructure and improve safety and service delivery.
I also had the opportunity to conduct a site visit to the S.A. Fisheries Museum in Laaiplek, Velddrif, where I received a tour of this historic site.
During the engagement, we further discussed issues of road infrastructure and related challenges, efforts to promote tourism – particularly as it relates to cycling, the lack of policing resources, and promoting green practices and protecting the environment.
To support further productivity in Velddrif, we are ensuring that residents can learn, harness their skillset, apply for work and pursue further opportunities by:
- Officially launching the upgraded Noordhoek Public library on 15 February, directly following the State of the Nation Address, together with the Provincial Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sports, Anroux Marais.
- Nominating the following sites for the Public Wi-Fi hotspot service: Velddrif Clinic, Velddrif High School, Velddrif Library, Noordhoek Library and Noordhoek Primary School.
To enable and drive local tourism in the Bergriver municipality, we are particularly focusing on restoring and protecting our natural heritage – which attracts many visitors. This includes:
- The finalisation of the Berg River Estuary Management Plan by Cape Nature in partnership with the Berg River Municipality. The estuary has since been recognised as a Ramsar site – recognising it as a Wetland of International Importance.
- The rehabilitation of riparian areas in the Berg and Breede catchments will continue to focus on the rehabilitation which includes the clearing of invasive alien species to restore the ecosystem, enable the filtering of pollutants, attenuate the effects of droughts and floods, and prevent erosion.
- To truly engage with and enjoy this natural heritage, many choose to cycle through the town. To this end, I am also pleased to announce the upgrading of 1 145metres of gravel sidewalks within Velddrif. Surface footways will be provided on at least one side of every road. The total project cost is R3million of which 245 households will benefit.
While residents highlighted that they have been negatively impacted by a lack of police resources, I was able to advise them that:
- We have identified the Swartland Municipality as the municipal area where the Area Based Team approach will be implemented in the West Coast District. The Area-Based Team approach aims to build and enhance priority communities to become responsive to safety concerns and crime. I will, of course, continue to fight for the province to receive its equitable share of policing resources.
Service delivery, particularly as relates to infrastructure, plays a significant role in driving economic growth and creating jobs. This is why I am further pleased to announce that:
- The St Christopher sewer pump station, which is responsible for pumping the sewerage from 3 pump stations, including its own, to the Velddrif Wastewater Treatment Works will be upgraded. Upgrades will bolster operations and ensure that the whole upstream system is accommodated. A total of R10.9million has been allocated to upgrade the sewer pump and a total number of 338 households will benefit from the project.
- To support learners and ensure a safe and encouraging environment in which to learn, the scheduled maintenance of Velddrif High School is planned for 2022/23.
I want to thank the Business Chamber for their important work which aims to improve business opportunities in Velddrif – ensuring that poverty is reduced, unemployment is addressed, and crime is abated.