After being chastised over the cost of a new stadium, the Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality has supplied more information.
The municipality perplexed many social media users on Monday, October 4th, when it launched a new stadium that purportedly cost over R15 million. The municipality announced the official opening of the Lesseyton Sports Field in a now-deleted Facebook post.
“Today, the R15 million Lesseyton Sports Field was officially opened in front of a large crowd of ecstatic community members. The facilities will now be available to soccer and rugby clubs in the area, according to the post. The post went viral on social media, with many people blaming the town of wasting money on an open field. The municipality said in a statement posted on Tuesday, October 5th, that it was aware of public concerns expressed on social media about the sport complex being built near Komani.
“The municipality regrets the manner in which the initial post was posted, which provided insufficient detail,” it stated. The municipality stated in a comprehensive answer that building on the sports complex began in early March 2020. The municipality said costs for surveying the field, installing a 780m palisade fence, and rock blasting were included in the facility's budget.
According to the municipality, the project scope also entailed: • Earthworks • Layer works • Athletics track • Ablution facilities (two blocks) – construction of 14 toilets and eight showers • Change rooms – showers and benches • Borehole drilling • Sewer system with septic tank • Electrical installation • Guardhouse • Steel grandstands
“This investment in the remote community was made by the municipality to boost sporting activities in the area. This project aims to provide a facility for the community, particularly the young, that will serve as a suitable playing ground for six communities.
The statement ended, "The community has a great history in sport and has also produced a professional soccer player, something the municipality is proud of." Floyd Shivambu, Deputy President of the Economic Freedom Fighters, was one of numerous social media users who slammed the municipality on the stadium's opening.
“An ANC municipality in the Eastern Cape, Enoch Mgijima has opened what they call a stadium. R15 million was paid to build this thing & they are proud of it. The people of South Africa must vote these people out of power because they have no shame. None whatsoever! R15m for this?” he wrote on Twitter.
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