ANC & EFF promise to have Ebumnandini declared a township after elections

Thousands of people were placed in Ebumnandini with promises of improved living conditions - that was 22 years ago.

Children play with a wheelbarrow in Ebumnandini on the West Rand after dumping waste at a dumpsite nearby. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The failure to declare an informal settlement in the west of Johannesburg an official township has taken centre stage in this year's election debate.

Thousands of people were placed in Ebumnandini with promises of improved living conditions - that was 22 years ago.

But because the area hasn't been declared an official township, it hasn't been prioritised to receive services such as clean running water, a functional sewage system and tarred roads.

The local ward will be hotly contested in this year's election after remaining in the hands of the African National Congress (ANC) for over two decades.

- ALSO READ: 22 years after being promised services, Ebumnandini community still waiting

The decades-long struggle in declaring Ebumnandini a township has been a hindrance in securing the necessary service such as sanitation and waste collection.

The ANC, which has been in charge of that community for 22 years, claims that it has been a complicated process.

Ward 128 spokesperson Athembile Sdenge said: "There was an immediate intervention from the city to say let us take people there for a certain time but since they were here, discussions started to be brought up. I called to say discussions of this proclamation happened at a later stage but people are saying they are no longer at the stage to be moving up and down."

The EFF's Welcome Boniswa is not buying it: "What kind of a city says we are not proclaimed to put electricity boxes and poles? What kind of a city says here you are not proclaimed, we can't bring you houses and proper water but we can give you a temporary ward?"

Both parties are promising to have Ebumnandini declared as a township in the months following the elections.

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