Fifty-one jobs were created in Mdantsane with the opening of the Builders Superstore at the Highway business hub late last month.
And while the new home improvement and building materials store was welcomed by the community, which saw them benefiting from a number of opening specials, concerns were raised about the shop’s recruitment process.
The ward 14 community believes the new store should have given preference to those within the area that the business is located in.
However, other ward councillors said it was impossible to expect that every employee at Highway would be from ward 14.
Hawker Ongezwa Mpahlwa, 33, said she had been watching the structure being built for the past year and had been hopeful that she would be among the first to be employed.
“Day in and day out I come here to work, selling fruit and vegetables to sustain my family, but I don’t want to do this for the rest of my life,” she said.
Mpahlwa said she submitted her CV and those of some of her friends and families to the new firm hoping that some of them would be employed.
“I didn’t expect for all of us to be accepted but at least one – that would’ve made a difference in my family,” she said.
Ward 14 councillor Zininzi Mtyingizane said she was disappointed that more ward 14 residents had not been employed. “It came as a surprise to me to learn that Builders liaised with the ward 20 councillor, Ntombizodwa Gamnca, who brought them CVs of people in her ward,” Mtyingizane said, adding that she was told she could supply only eight CVs of people in her ward.
Gamnca said she was one of many ward councillors the building company had called for assistance in their bid to facilitate recruitment.
“All I did was answer my phone and give the company a broad variety of CVs for them to choose from. I had nothing to do with their recruitment process,” Gamnca said.
Builders public relations officer Asanda Nkomo confirmed they had engaged with ward councillors for the recruitment process.
“We used our internal recruitment processes and also collaborated with Mdantsane ward councillors to assist us with gathering CVs from potential candidates in the area,” Nkomo said.