/ 14 May 2024

MBDA recruits army of 206 to clean up Gqeberha, Kariega CBDs, North End Lake precinct

Bugs 7

The Mandela Bay Development Agency, an entity of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, unveiled an army of street cleaners, waste pickers, tree-felling and general waste collection workers to tackle the decay in the precincts of Kariega, Gqeberha and the North End as a top-up service to Metro initiatives. The 206 are part of a database of thousands that responded to the call for applications in April.

Anele Qaba, CEO of the MBDA, speaking at the launch of programme, emphasised its objectives: “To rid the inner city of dirt, to reclaim its cleanliness and to restore confidence in those who live, work and trade in those key economic hubs of the city. The benefit of this programme is that it also deals with rampant unemployment.”

The 206 recruits unveiled today will be easily recognisable through the distinct PPE and branding (The MBDA at work) complete with employment reference numbers on their ID tags. The event was attended by all MBDA board members, and key stakeholders such as Central SRA, Discover Mandela Bay and Nelson Mandela Bay municipal officials.

Speaking on behalf of the Deputy Executive Mayor, stand-in Chief Whip of Council, Cllr Wandisile Jikeka, welcomed the programme and urged the recruits to not let the city down. “Many will be looking at this programme with interest and it is up to you to be the ambassadors, do your job with pride. It is important that when that SMS rings on the 25th, you know you have earned it with pride.

“The city will be looking at this with the hope to find a way to incorporate its success recipe and extend to other areas. I also take pride that Kariega has good representation in this programme, and that is important because we area one Metro,” concluded Jikeka.

The Central SRA Chairperson, David Edwards, commented on the sidelines that they look forward to collaborating with this group and look for synergies in order to improve the coverage of all the programmes currently on the ground. “The Central SRA supports this programme.”

Quick facts about the programme

  • Teams of general workers will be deployed into the three priority precincts to provide numerous services, such as tree cutting, street sweeping and other garden and maintenance-related activities.
  • The workers have been sourced through an extensive open and public recruitment process that involved public advertisements and social media use.
  • The workers will be placed at strategic areas and will provide the necessary services required to maintain clean and liveable spaces.

Deployment: The 200 general workers with six supervisors will be as follows:

  1. Kariega/Uitenhage CBD = 75 workers
  2. Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Precinct = 25 workers
  3. Gqeberha Inner City/CBD = 100 workers

Operational hours: 8am-4pm daily, with workers assembling at specific points.

Oversight: The day-to-day oversight will be provided by an appointed team of supervisors and MBDA rangers.

Cost of labour: The initial costs of labour for the programme for two months is estimated at R2 million, funded from funds that would have been unspent due to the late arrival of MBDA tranches.

Start date: The recruits have started with induction and familiarisation and are expected to be fully deployed by Wednesday, 15 May; this will run for two months.

Future plans: Although the programme is currently funded for two months, the MBDA will, in the coming days, invite suitably qualified entities to partner in sourcing external training and skills funding in order to provide a pathway for these recruits to longer-term fixed employment opportunities. Funding opportunities exist from various SETAs and industry bodies, and with suitably skilled partners with demonstrable track record, we believe we can tap into these to support job creation.

Tools of trade: The MBDA has sourced various items as tools of trade to make it possible for the recruits to carry out their responsibilities, safely and effectively. Some of the items include: