Neighbourly Notes – 21 October 2021

THE FINAL JUMP: As is customary at Port Alfred High School, the matric class of 2021 went down to East Beach immediately after their Valedictory Assembly last Wednesday and had a quick dip in their uniforms.

TODAY it is 574 days since the Covid-19 restrictions were imposed.

WITH elections coming up in less than two weeks, (Monday November 1), people should be considering their options. Aside from jobs, housing, security and so forth, one of the biggest issues in the Port Alfred area is the lack of water. This may play a part in the selection of a suitable party to represent the community. Each party contesting the elections in Ndlambe has been afforded the opportunity to briefly outline their manifesto and answer important questions we have put to them. The questions include how the party is going to resolve the water issues, work with the SAPS in proactive crime prevention, and promote local business development. Unfortunately, we have not received any replies as yet but will publish their answers when we receive them.

AS I walk around town these days, the question I am asked most frequently is, “When are we getting water?” The simple answer is that no one actually knows. If you have followed the woeful story of failed RO plants and tenders over the years you will know that the many attempts to resolve what has become a major crisis in the area, have failed to provide anywhere near the amount of water required for the town. With the holiday season fast approaching, how will we attract visitors when we have little or no water? As tourism is one of the area’s primary sources of income, our current crisis will have a very negative effect on businesses in the area. The new turnkey 1ML RO plant will only supplement the 1.4ML being produced by the QFS SWRO plant, and there is considerable doubt that the supposed 3ML waste water RO plant will produce more than a trickle at the taps. It is time the municipality recognised and admitted its mistakes and stopped political manoeuvring by appointing the right people to do the job.

ACCORDING to members of the Station Hill community, the area is under siege, with criminals roaming freely. They protested outside the Port Alfred magistrate’s court on Monday morning to oppose the granting of bail to known criminals in the area. “Some are known to the police and the prison services as they have rap-sheets the size of books. “But they keep on being released and then victimising the community. We don’t feel safe,” said one of the protestors. He went on to say children could not play in the streets, and women could not walk around the area by themselves, particularly at night. This puts the residents of Station Hill in fear for their safety and is an untenable situation. Something in the system must change to prevent the victimisation of an entire community. The first step would be for the prison services to provide notification to the release of a known criminal to the SAPS, who can then pass that on to the community at large.

GET your scissors out and have some fun with our new reader’s competition in the Talk of the Town, which begins this week. This week we are publishing the grid and, in four succeeding weeks you will have to hunt through the paper to find the missing pieces. Stick them to the grid and submit your entry to the Talk of the Town offices by Monday November 22 to stand a chance to win one of three excellent prizes. See the paper for competition details. WE are also running a subscription promotion where, if you subscribe to TOTT for 12- month home delivery, you will receive a beautiful make-up hamper from Catrice Cosmetics worth R500. Subscribe now as this is a limited offer.

HAPPY birthday greetings to everyone celebrating and enjoying a special day in the week ahead. Congratulations to all, with wishes for many more, especially Dr Glenda Hicks, Irma Venter, Jean Steyn, Ria van der Merwe, Blake Squires, Louise Butler, Derrick Page, Shannon Hopkins, Johanna van der Merwe, Eddie Hoseck, Bea Klopper, Diane Malan, Jan Simpson, Erica Alexandre, Lulu du Preez, Jessica Pullen, Reginald Prince, Lionel Farao, Maryna Shepherd, Anneli Hanstein, Belinda Prince, Ava Lawson, Ivo Chunnet, Jeanette Msipa, Percy Elliott, Peter Sülter, Allen McLean, Wesley Grove, Tracy Wilmot, Ewa Mogilnicka, twin brothers Jacques and Billy Krige, Chris Hammond, Patricia Maqanda, Graeme Frost and Heine Aylward.

BEST wishes for your continued success to all businesses or organisations having or adding another anniversary to their score, especially The Kowie Museum, Pig ‘n Whistle (when they reopened in 2008), and Sew Smart.

THE world has begun to revert to pre-Covid times and industry is generally back in action. However, things have changed in the meantime. The rand has suffered and has lost the previous gains it had made. But, with Brent Crude sitting above the $80 per barrel ceiling, this will hamper government’s plan for a resurgence of the South African economy. Inexplicable actions by the government (the release of Jacob Zuma, sacking of the former health minister, racial slurs by political parties and so on) have done little to increase interest from overseas investors. With 2020’s figures in brackets to compare against, the Rand was trading at R14.49 to the Dollar (R16.41), R19.96 to the Pound (R21.36) and R16.85 to the Euro (R19.45). Gold was trading at $1,778.99 per fine ounce ($1,918.80), platinum at $1,046.51 per ounce ($888.38) and Brent Crude Oil at $81.15 per barrel ($42.93).

WEDDING anniversary greetings and our congratulations to all couples celebrating an anniversary, especially Emil and Wilma Jurgenson, Colin and Joan Purdon, Graeme and Liesl Brown, Ryan and Sonai Owsley, David and Margaret Foulkes.

THOUGHT for the week: “Many good minds working together are always better than one working alone – teamwork certainly makes the dream work!”

BEST regards as always,
The Team

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