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October 2017
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Cookhouse Wind Farm 1(1)
Top: A Health and Safety Officer begins marking a turbine foundation excavation. Bottom: The Construction Management Team discusses progress at a turbine foundation position.
Cookhouse Wind Farm 2
The Cookhouse Wind Farm
This Cookhouse Wind Farm Local Circular marks the second of its kind, providing the local community to the Wind Farm with relevant updates and news from site.
Significant milestones were achieved over the course of the last month, including further road and foundation progress, the arrival and shipping of further turbines and the inspection of production facilities in India and Spain.
Construction Update:
Construction continues on site with civil contractors now well underway on section 2 of the total 8 sections of road to be constructed. Each section comprises about 8 turbine locations and the roads that link them. Road construction is now in a steady rhythm with the process of plant search and rescue, topsoil clearing and stockpiling for later rehabilitation and smoothing and compacting of surfacing material well honed. Likewise, the preparation of hardstands to accommodate cranes and equipment for the erection of turbine components is well underway. Excavations also continue in preparation for the steel rebar structure and subsequent pouring of around 40 trucks of concrete to create each of the 66 turbine foundations. To date a total of 15 foundations have been excavated.
The Contractor expects to start moving equipment to site in the coming weeks. Given the high volume of equipment and limited road capacity this will have to be stretched out over a period of time. Using the specially imported turbine transport trucks a “dry run” of the trip from the Port of Coega to the Wind Farm was completed in May to help inform the contractor of likely bottlenecks during the transportation phase. No major constraints through to the turn-off onto Patryshoogte road were identified.
Local Involvement:
Local employment and contract opportunities continue to rise with increases expected in June, July and August. The Contractor and sub-contractors have reported that they will be hiring up to 120 people over the coming three months for positions such as general worker and building, bush clearing and plant search and rescue, steel fixing, concrete hands and shutter hands, brick and foundation work, and cable installation. The Jobseeker and Service Provider Databases are used as the primary resources for sourcing individuals. The Jobseeker Database now has more than 2200 people registered. Once again it must be made clear that jobs and contracts will be awarded on the basis of contractor needs, relevant skills, experience, BEE status, and cost effectiveness. With so many people on the databases in comparison to the jobs available, unfortunately only a small percentage of those who registered may be contacted, as the number of employment opportunities is obviously less than the number of registered people or business.
(To be continued next week) .

uie by skuiling2
Die uie word sorteer.
Dit reën Uie
Haweloses, hongeriges en werkloses het onlangs op die plaaslike Vukasebenza Skuilng toegesak nadat ‘n weldoener ongeveer 60 mudsakke uie daar afgelaai het.
Volgens Gussie Botha, bestuurder van die Skuiling waar tot ‘n 100 honger mense daagliks van ‘n bord kos voorsien word, was die mense besig om op te daag vir hul middagete en is hulle toe ingespan om die uie te sorteer en in kleiner sakkies te verpak. Die sortering het baie goed verloop en was ‘n geleentheid vir diè wat elke dag net ontvang, om hulle deel vir die gemeenskap te doen. Wat hulle nie op daardie stadium geweet het nie, was dat daar ‘n groot verrassing op hulle gewag het aangesien elke werker na middagete ‘n sakkie uie gekry het om huis toe te neem.
Volgens Botha is hulle verskriklik dankbaar vir die skenking aangesien hulle bykans elke dag ‘n uitjie of twee gebruik om die mense se kos meer smaaklik te maak. Hulle gaan ook piekels, atjar en ingelegde uie maak wat aan die publiek verkoop kan word vir fondse.
Botha sê sy het verneem die skenking is deel van ‘n projek van boere in die distrik wat saad vir groot saadverspreiders produseer. Die Skuiling het vantevore ook ander groente soos botterskorsies, waarvan die sade reeds uitgeskep is, van hierdie saadprodusente ontvang.
Sy sê die werksessie by die Skuiling was ‘n geleentheid vir die groep werkers om na ‘n uitsending van ds Matie van Niekerk van die Bybelgenootskap se Proclaimer-boodskap te luister.

Municipalities in the Eastern Cape racked up an astounding R130 million in legal fees during the 2011/12 financial year. This amount was more than double the costs of R60,45 million recorded in 2010/11.
Until there are real consequences for poor performance by municipal officials, the citizens of the Eastern Cape can forget about decent service delivery.
I will be asking the MEC for Local Government, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, to answer in the House during oral question time in the Provincial Legislature on 19 June 2013 what action has been taken against employees in municipalities who through negligence caused litigation and how this can be prevented in the future.
A response to a question I posed to the MEC revealed that:

  • As at 31 October 2012 73 matters had been recorded at the Mthatha High court.
  • Of the 24 municipalities that reported their legal fee costs, King Sabata Dalindyebo Municipality recorded the highest legal costs of R 9,86 million. (These costs were attributed to defend a matter where the municipality was being sued by parents of children who were burnt from a negligently exposed electricity cable.)
  • The beleaguered Kouga Municipality ran up legal fees to the tune of R4, 2 million. (These fees were incurred by the municipality defending the actions of wrongfully suspended official Fred Dennis which cost them R1, 5 million and recently the wrongful suspensions of two other officials.)

No statistics could be obtained for cases involving municipalities from the other High Courts namely Bhisho, Grahamstown and Port Elizabeth.
According to the MEC his department has intervened by placing legal advisors in 22 municipalities. However, this is not working and is causing double legal costs because these advisors have to appoint professional practitioners to handle these cases.
Furthermore, during a meeting of the Eastern Cape Local Government Legal Advisor’s Forum, provincial Auditor General Singa Ngqwala pointed out a 98% lack of consequences of poor performance and transgression in municipalities.
The exorbitant legal costs incurred by municipalities, caused by negligence and incompetence, mean less money for service delivery.
I will next week be asking for a full disclosure of details of every legal matter against municipalities during the budget meeting of the department and how we can resolve these matters quickly with minimal further cost.
It is clear that the anger in communities over the lack of accountability in their municipalities by the ruling party can only be addressed if they, as voters, take the first step by making their voices heard by voting DA in 2014.


  • Blue Crane Route Municipality – The good, The bad and The ugly – updating the public on BCRM matters
  • Adelaide – Emil Bosch tree af na 1,6 miljoen kilometre
  • Adelaide Round Table Golf Day
  • Pearston Kuddekompetisie wenners
  • Snoekfees op Middelburg gehou
  • Public Protector SA meets stakeholders in Blue Crane Route
  • Land Rehabilitation success at Camdeboo National Park

The Somerset Budget is now available in full colour. (PDF)
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