Demarcation: 'Govt acting against will of people'

The government acted against the will of the people of Merafong by passing a Bill in Parliament to incorporate the Gauteng town into the North West province, the South African Communist Party said on Wednesday.

“There’s nothing democratic about what is happening in Merafong,” SACP district secretary Nkosiphendule Kolisile said in Johannesburg. “The people of Merafong do not want to be incorporated into the North West.”

On Tuesday, the National Assembly approved the Bill, which will see the areas of Merafong, Khutsong, Carletonville and Fochville incorporated into the North West—despite recent violent protests against the move.

Kolisile said Parliament made the vote despite a ruling by the municipal demarcation board that Merafong remain in Gauteng.

He said Parliament must take into account the views of the people of South Africa.

“When the people elect a government, they do so on the basis of trust and with a hope that their views and grievances will be listened to.

“We therefore hope not to see the recurrence of what we have experienced in the past week where our government speaks and acts in direct opposition to the people.”

The Bill will now be sent to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) to be discussed. Before the Bill is voted on in the NCOP, the provincial portfolio committees will go out to the communities to hold public hearings.

“We hope that the portfolio committees will ensure that proper consultation takes place. The only correct way is to listen to the views of the people.”

The SACP will march to the Gauteng provincial government on Friday to demonstrate that the people want to remain in Gauteng, he said.—Sapa

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