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NEWS

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September 18, 2013

maritzburg

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Nqobile Mtolo 033 355 1170

Jika Joe residents rebuild shacks PHOTO: NQOBILE MTOLO

Jika Joe infor­ mal settle­ ment’s Nonh­ lanhla Mbatha says that tem­ peratures inside the tents are extreme.

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No more informal trading at key spots >> Those traders in the vicinity of national key points will be moved

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Business licencing to aid regulation

THE residents of the Jika Joe informal settlement have started piecing their lives back together after a fire gutted about 100 shacks last week Sunday. When the Maritzburg Fever visited the informal settlement on Monday, many shacks had been put up. More than 40 tents, and mobile toilets, provided by the uMgungundlovu Municipality lined the Tatham sports ground. One resident, Nonkanyiso Mjwara, said the extreme temperatures inside the tent meant that it was not a healthy living option for her two month old baby. She has asked her neighbours to rebuild a shack for her. “We lost everything. There are many people staying in one tent and that is also not healthy,” she said. Meanwhile, Lindiwe Mbatha has also had enough of living in the tents. She is sharing one with her seven–month old daughter, mother and sibling. “It’s not enjoyable and I have had enough of this. It is extremely hot in here. We cannot pack up and leave because we do not have building material. We are stuck where we are at the moment,” said Mbatha. Said Hoswat said that he also lost everything and was grateful that donations from various businesses and government departments have enabled him to start over. Jika Joe community leader Thembinkosi Magagula said that the community is grateful for donations which included two plate stoves, blankets, tents, food and clothing. “If there are more people who would like to help us, we would appreciate it,” he said.

FROM street trading to thriving small take–away outlets, all businesses under the Msunduzi Municipality will soon be regulated through proper licencing. Thisisexpectedtoregulatebusinessconductandenhance revenue in the city. Addressing the Executive Committee (Exco), deputy mu­ nicipal manager for economic development, Dr Ray Ng­ cobo, said that business licencing is a legislative mandate that the municipality must ensure comes to life. “We as the city have a delegated authority in terms of the Provincial Business Act, that anybody who is doing busi­ ness in our city must be licenced. Currently, the database of businesses that we have is not authentic. We have busi­ nesses that are trading in our city without licences and they are trading in areas that are not zoned for business,” said Ngcobo. He said that they are preparing to implement the new act that is being introduced by the Department of Trade In­ dustry (DTI). “So we want to re–licence everybody. Those who have got valid licences will not be paying but those who do not have licences will be issued with one. In that way, we will be able to pick up some lost revenue and have a comprehen­ sive database so that we know who is doing what. This will also include licencing of informal traders,” said Ng­ cobo. Ngcobo added that there will be additional licences for businesses trading in hazardous material, which includes service stations. He said that businesses which trade in foodwillhavetogetalicencefromthemunicipality’senvi­ ronmental health section. “But the base licence is the one that gives you the right to operate in our city,” said Ngcobo. Mayor Chris Ndlela said that the information will be com­ municated to the public in a form of advertisements. “Those who run businesses illegally, or not in terms of how they are supposed to run them, will jump sky high. The intention is not to punish but to regulate,” said Ndlela. The Business Act 71 of 1991 states that any businesses op­ erating in the country must have a trading or business li­ cence, and local municipalities are mandated to regulate that process.

The smallest thing … makes the biggest difference …

PHOTO: NQOBILE MTOLO

The Msunduzi Municipality does not want to see any informal trading around the Premier’s Office, the City Hall and KZN Legislature.

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I

NFORMAL street traders in the city, who have been in business for years, say that the Msunduzi Municipality is messing with their only source of income by making them move. At the last Executive Committee (Exco) meeting, the municipalitymadeitclearthatinformaltrading in the vicinity of national key points such as the Legislature, the City Hall, the Supreme Court and the Premier’s Office buildings, will be eradicated. The deputy municipal manager for economic development, Ray Ngcobo, said that the municipality will use a “carrot and stick” ap-

proach in order to structure informal trading. “The database we have is not authentic because informal traders come and go. The carrot is obviously going to be registering them, helping them in terms of street infrastructure like shelters, whilst at the same time eradicating informal trade in certain areas, especially in areas which are identified as national key points,” he said. Ngcobo added that there shouldn’t be any trading on the pavements of those areas. Mayor Chris Ndlela said that there have been complaints from informal traders who say they are being victimized by municipal security staff. “We came across many com-

plaints from people saying that they have been harassed through our security guards in terms of the enforcement of bylaws for street traders. Some of them complain that they have made the applicationsforlicencesandsoareillegally trading, not because of their own sins so they say, but because of our slow movement in service development,” said Ndlela. Both Mathemba Shabangu from Tembalihle informal settlements near Glenwood and Zo Ngcobo, from Edendale, said that for years, municipal officials at AS Chetty building have told them that they could not accept their informal trade applications because there is no space available. Ngcobo, who started trading in

1998, said that space restraints have caused them to resort to informal trading. She sells sweets at a cost of 30 cents each, cigarettes at R2 each and maintains a public mobile phone for which she charges 90 cents per minute. “On countless ocassions, municipal security have confiscated my stock and each time, I am required to pay R105 to get my stock back. This is how we have been feeding our families for years. The municipality should then give us jobs. Life is hard,” said Ngcobo. A few months ago, the municipality passed bylaws which abolish unregistered informal street trading, prostitution, street children and beggars.

Maritzburg Fever 20130918  

Maritzburg Fever 20130918

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