Mogoditshane/Thamaga Sub-District Council has finally responded to nagging controversial reports that it has constructed pupils’ toilets for the sum of P7 million to meet COVID-19 health requirements for schools before the facilities re-opened in June 2020.
The controversial projects attracted the attention of Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Eric Molale who promised the nation that he will conduct an investigation into the construction of schools ablution blocks. On such toilet in the Mogoditshane/Thamaga Sub-District reportedly cost the tax-payer a cool P1 million. Addressing the Sub-District Council meeting session recently, the Sub-Council Chairperson, Dux Mafoko said indeed of recent there were reports that the council has constructed seven toilets at a cost of P7 million under Gabane/Mmankgodi Constituency.
He stated that the sub- district council has constructed only one ablution toilet block at Serameng Primary School in the constituency. But on the contrary, he stated that the current expenditure for the project stands at P544, 433.65 VAT inclusive.
“The said project is complete and has been handed over. I must inform this honourable house that we have never constructed seven toilets in the constituency let alone at that said hefty cost. That is also not true at all. Final payments for the contractor is being prepared and you will be notified of the total cost,” Mafoko said.
Mafoko said a maroon water stand was also circulated in the media as a water stand the council has allegedly constructed at a cost of P 90,000. He also dismissed the said reports as false stating that the Sub-District Council has never constructed such a water stand during COVID-19.
“Those with ulterior motive took a picture wherever they took it and purported it to be the one we were constructing. The information on the hand washing stations as reported in the media was also devoid of truth and was yet another misrepresentation of reality,” he said.
The chairperson also said the hand washing stations include various components being six wash basins,
He argued that such misinformation is a propaganda that is deliberately spread to tarnish the image of councillors in the eyes of the public.
“Councillors do not at all seat in the award of tenders as that is the prerogative of adjudication committee as per Local Authorities Procurement and Disposal (LAPAD) Act. I humbly request politicians to stop breeding conflict and causing unnecessary tension by misinforming the public. That must be condemned in the strongest possible terms,” Mafoko said.
Mafoko further stated that if such statements and misinformation are not handled with care they could lead to public unrest. Mafoko stated that the sub-district has been constructing seven, 10 cubicle toilet blocks at various primary schools comprising five girls toilets, four boys toilets, 10 hand wash basins, four urinals and one store room for cleaning material and equipment. He said that the projects are at various stages ranging between 85% and 100% physical completion status.
“The construction of the toilet blocks at Nkoyaphiri and Serameng Primary Schools are both complete and have been handed over. Gobuamang and Nkoane Primary Schools are almost at 98%. Tau-Manthe Primary School is at 90%, Kubung Primary is at 95% and Rungwana Primary School project is at 85%. The projects are expected to be completed by July 24th 2020,” he said.
Mafoko also disclosed that a total of 10 high steel stands and water tanks are being installed in 10 primary schools in the sub-district council faced with shortage of water. He said five projects are at 100% and five are at 60%.