Residents upset by tender recall

A construction tender worth millions has been cancelled.

INCONVENIENCED: Nompumelelo residents yesterday expressed disappointment after Buffalo City Metro cancelled a tender for completion of their new community hall. Construction, which started last year, meant that a daycare operation had to temporarily move to an unsuitable and precarious venue: Picture: RANDELL ROSKRUGE

The tender, advertised by Buffalo City Metro (BCM) last year to finish building a new community hall in Nompumelelo in Beacon Bay, was for Phase 2 of the project after Phase 1 started last year.

However, residents from the township yesterday said Phase 1 had not yet been completed.

New metro manager Andile Sihlahla advertised the cancellation notice in the Daily Dispatch yesterday.

He did not say when the tender would be re-advertised.

The tender was initially advertised in the Dispatch on September 13 with a closing date of October 14.

R7-million had been allocated by BCM to build the double-storey hall.

However, unhappy residents yesterday said they were not told of the tender cancellation by BCM, and they complained that the stalling of the project affected the community badly.

Community leader Andrew Thanda said: “Preprimary school children from the Hlumisa Daycare Centre were moved from their building on the site before the construction started because they were told the construction would affect them.”

The daycare centre operation was moved to a unserviced shack which is used as a church during the weekends.

School principal Nomvuyo Hintsho said before construction started last year around June there was an agreement between the community and BCM that the creche would be accommodated on the hall’s ground floor once the complex was completed.

“The work has stopped now and that means it will take us longer to move from this shack.

 

“It is dusty and has a leaking roof, there are no toilets and no water or electricity,” Hintsho said.

Hintsho said they were also being threatened with eviction by the church members.

“In May thieves stole two of our gas stoves we use to cook for the children. We opened a case with the police but the goods have not been recovered yet,” she added.

 

BCM spokesman Samkelo Ngwenya said said the tender had been cancelled because of “technicalities around the bid specifications”.

He disputed claims that Phase 1 was still incomplete.

“The first phase, which includes mainly the base, has been completed and the tender that we are going to re-advertise consists of the construction of the upper structure.

“We are aiming to re-advertise the tender as soon as possible so that we can adjudicate by the first quarter of the new financial year.”

 

He distanced BCM from the responsibility to look for an alternative venue for the creche and said the process was “mainly guided by the local leadership in the area and the community”. — mamelag@dispatch.co.za

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