South Africa

Centurion ward elects councillor

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Centurion’s ward 64 headed to the polls last Wednesday, November 8, to elect a new councillor following the passing of Casper McDonald.

The DA managed to retain the ward, as the community chose Alta de Kock as its new councillor.

De Kock has been DA operations manager since 2009 overseeing Zululand and was ward councillor in AbaQulusi, where security and practical solutions were her main focus.

“My family lives here in Centurion, that’s why I moved here to be closer to them since I was alone in Vryheid,” De Kock told Rekord.

De Kock became a PR councillor in Tshwane in 2021.

“I’ve always liked to serve people – that is my mission in life. I was a teacher for 24 years, which has the same principles of serving, and fixing problems, of making things better.”

De Kock said she believes in a personal touch with people when it comes to getting things done.

“I like to handle things with dignity and respect, to connect with people. It makes a difference.”

Ward 64 is a largely residential ward with a strong sense of community, and the councillor says the main issues she wants to tackle are streetlights and illegal dumping.

“For streetlights, the tender has been put out and they are busy with the vetting. So from the beginning of January, we will have a contractor, but I will try to address a few of them by December, for security.”

She said that while it would be a challenge, it was important for the residents’ safety.

Illegal dumping is a problem in many parts of Centurion and is difficult to resolve.

De Kock said she has tried to involve the community to combat the illegal dumping in the ward.

“We got the community to help us to clean that area,” said De Kock, with the task of keeping the area clean once the community has intervened.

“We don’t have the funds but I would like to find a way to install bollards around open spaces so that people can’t dump there.”

De Kock also wants to use her time to focus on the wetlands on the western side of the ward, which she says adds value to the community and an important environmental space.

“I have already spoken to someone who specialises in biodiversity to advise us on how to enhance the wetlands.”

She said she would try to get residents actively interested in the space to look after it.

While some residents have complained about communication, De Kock said this is something she is prepared for.

“There’s no use in shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic while Rome is burning,” she said. “I want to address issues that people have, not their personal issues. Let’s focus on the issues.”

She invited residents to get in contact with her on 082 892 7878.

According to the IEC, 23.6% of the voters in the ward cast their ballots. The DA increased its majority from 53.31% in 2021 to 66.77%.

ActionSA, a coalition partner of the DA in Tshwane also increased its share from 11.9% in 2021 to 23.4%.

Other parties that contested the ward were the ANC, the EFF, ACDP and the Republican Conference (RC).

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