from FUTHI MBHELE in Durban
KwaZulu Natal Bureau
DURBAN, (CAJ News) – EXCITEMENT has greeted the reopening of the Tongaat pool, more than a year of inactive as a result of deadly floods and subsequent vandalism.
The reopening, at an event presided by eThekwini Mayor, Mxolisi Kaunda, is a major development in the council’s drive to reopen pools.
Floods damaged the pump station at the Tongaat pool.
“The floods last year caused severe damage to infrastructure which resulted in the malfunctioning of many facilities in the city, including pools,” he said.
Ethekwini has 54 swimming pools.
More than half of them are open, while others are undergoing repairs.
“We will continue to build swimming pools, especially in townships and rural areas,” Kaunda assured.
“We condemn the vandalism of municipal infrastructure and urge communities to protect it as these structures belong to them,” the mayor censured.
A swimmer, Phindile Makhaya, is excited children can now enjoy the benefits of swimming.
“Water helps you physically and mentally. It also helps the kids not to get involved in drugs and other bad stuff outside this country,” she said.
“It helps you to focus in school as well. Doing sport and school at the same time helps to focus. It is very important for the kids to learn how to swim,” Makhaya added.
She said kids must be familiar with the pools.
“People must stop saying kids will drown. There are lifeguards in the pools who are there to help kids who can’t swim. There are also swimming programmes,” Makhaya said.
Another resident, Thembeka Gumede, welcomed the reopening.
“I can’t wait for the summer time. Finally our pool is open,” Gumede said.
Meanwhile, after opening the pool, Kaunda convened a Mayoral Imbizo in the area to address service delivery challenges raised by the community in Hambanathi.
– CAJ News