Ad hoc committee on Deelpan needs to probe failed disaster response urgently

Issued by Freddy Sonakile MPL – DA North West Spokesperson on Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs
20 Sep 2022 in Press Statements

Note to Editors: Please find the attached soundbite in English and Sesotho by Freddy Sonakile MPL.

The DA is calling on the North West Provincial Legislature to immediately bring to life the ad hoc committee that the House resolved on. The ANC’s failed disaster response in Deelpan Village must not only be exposed, but action must be taken for failure to effectively respond to the desperate needs of the affected community.

The Provincial Department of COGTAHS indicated in its presentation to the national ad hoc committee in June that about R67 million has been made available for disaster relief efforts.

However, following an oversight visit to Deelpan this week, homes are still submerged under water while the victims are still taking shelter in the homes of relatives and neighbours. See recent images here, here, and here.

There is still no sign of any temporary housing for the affected flood victims, despite Treasury releasing funding under the Disaster Management Act.

It is unacceptable that nearly 5 months since heavy rainfall battered the village in Tswaing Local municipality and R67 million allocated for disaster relief, no tangible assistance can be seen.

Last week, community members took to the streets protesting over the failed promises by the North West Provincial Government to alleviate the impact of the disaster. The land where temporary shelters were supposed to be erected remains bare.

Roads that were supposed to be repaired as reported by the Provincial Government are still inaccessible. The DA wrote to the Auditor-General requesting a probe into the spending in Deelpan to date.

We have today written to the Speaker of the Legislature, Suzan Dantjie, asking her to convene a meeting of the Programming Committee to urgently produce the ad hoc committee programme. Failure to do so will amount to contempt since the establishment of the ad hoc committee is a resolution of the House.

The DA sympathizes with the residents of Deelpan and we will be pushing for answers over expenditure that government incurred which was supposed to benefit the residents of Deelpan to alleviate the impact the disaster has on their lives and livelihoods.