Focus on the positives

FINDING SOLUTIONS: Border Kei Chamber of Business (BKCOB) members have voiced their willingness to work with Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality to solve challenges currently facing the community, including electricity outages at a meeting on Tuesday at the Queenstown Golf Club with, from left, Twizza owner and crisis committee member Ken Clark, BKCOB executive director Les Holbrook and BKCOB chairwoman and crisis committee member Adré Bartis Picture: ZOLILE MENZELWA

LOCAL businesspeople who attended the Border Kei Chamber of Business (BKCOB) meeting at the Queenstown Golf Club on Tuesday, are happy with their representation on the crisis committee set up to deal with infrastructural challenges in Komani.

The Rep reported (“Committee to look at ailing infrastructure,” March 3) that a 13-member committee had been elected during a meeting which indicated that the electrical network had not been maintained for the last 12 years due to a number of factors, including budget constraints and a lack of human resource capacity.

The meeting between the Enoch Mgijima Local Muncipality and the business fraternity was called in the wake of constant water and electricity outages.

BKCOB executive director Les Holbrook said the chamber had made a lot of progress in opening doors to ensure problems were solved.

He said the business fraternity now needed to focus on what had to be done to get out of the current crisis.

“This is not going to be an easy road to travel. This is a new and different approach and it is going to need a give-and-take attitude that seeks to help.”

BKCOB local chairwoman Adré Bartis presented the terms of reference for the committee as drawn up by the Eastern Cape Socio-Economic Counsultative Council (Ecsecc).

She said while the committee was to focus on electricity, Escecc had checked and found more challenges for the committee to address.

Local businessman and committee member Ken Clark said business representatives on the committee needed a mandate from the business sector.

“This is a positive move and we need positive attitudes.

If we all stand together we can benefit as one of the best municipalities to embark on this process,” Clark said.

He said issues had to be chanelled through Bartis adding that “our duty as the committee members, together with the media, is to keep everybody informed.”

Thando Ng’obo of Salimisa Holdings, a member of the Black Management Forum, said the scope of the committee could be extended depending on the budget. He said there were many challenges facing business in the area.

“We will be able to solve all our problems if we can make this work,” Ng’obo said.

Holbrook said those not elected to the committee should not feel disheartened as “not being in the leadership does not mean that you do not have a voice.”

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