Komani complex named after late struggle hero Bathandwa Ndondo

OFFICE LAUNCH: The Komani Office Park, where all local government departments will be stationed, was named after liberation struggle icon Bathandwa Ndondo last week. Present at the official opening of the double storey building were, from left, the late Bathandwa Ndondo’s mother, Princess Lulama Ndondo, premier Oscar Mabuyane and public works MEC Lubabalo Madikizela Picture: ABONGILE SOLUNDWANA

Government departments under one roof

Some government departments are set to save about R3m per annum which they previously spent on rentals for privately-owned properties.

This is after the department of public works resolved to station all the departments in the Komani Office Park ‘complex’, which was named after struggle icon Bathandwa Ndondo on Wednesday last week.

Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane, who officially opened the park, resolved that the Komani Office Park precinct be named after the late liberation struggle hero to keep his legacy alive.

At the same event, the department of public works also launched its recently constructed double-storey building worth R124m for the departments of education and sport, recreation and arts and culture.

The transport department and the safety and liaison department were the only two still renting office space in Komani.

Mabuyane said the department of public works should be applauded for the cutting-edge, top-class facility.

“It is important for government employees to work in dignified offices as people who are giving services to our society.”

The premier had chosen the occasion to also honour Bathandwa Ndondo’s mother, Princess Lulama Ndondo, during this year’s Women’s Month.

”We chose Women’s Month to honour you for what you had to endure during the tempestuous period you went through after losing your son, Bathandwa Ndondo.

”We are grateful that God has kept you this long, for you to be able to be at peace in your heart. You sacrificed your son for us and he will remain etched in our minds for generations to come. Everyone who hears about the offices named after Ndondo will want to know who he was,” Mabuyane said.

Public works MEC Lubabalo Madikizela said the advantage of a one-stop ‘complex’ was that people could get their services in one place without having to go to town. ”We also want to get space to establish rental housing and are working with human settlements for employees to be in close proximity to their work.

“This is the programme we want to roll out in all districts and local municipalities, where government departments will all be in one space, in state-owned properties.

”This means there will be buying power compressed into one area. I encourage entrepreneurs to take advantage of the centralised buying power,” Madikizela said.

The MEC said the department was training young artisans who would maintain all the department’s properties to avoid contracting to private companies.

Ndondo’s sister, Busisiswe, said the family was grateful that his legacy was finally being recognised.

”Ndondo died in 1985. We thought his name was erased from the minds of people, but now we can see his name has been revived.

”There were several events held in his name last year are a reassurance of his major contribution in the liberation struggle.”

Busisiwe said Ndondo had led students at the University of Transkei when he died.

He was a patriot, he was about putting people’s lives first. ”He was a true hero of African people, a martyr of struggle and freedom who paid the ultimate price for the freedom we are enjoying today,” she said.