ANC’s councillor candidate for Elsies River Gerald Johannes. Picture: Supplied.
ANC’s councillor candidate for Elsies River Gerald Johannes. Picture: Supplied.

ANC councillor candidate punts community renovation for Elsies River

By Nomalanga Tshuma Time of article published Oct 15, 2021

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Cape Town - After 34-years in the education sector, struggle veteran and Spes Bona High School deputy principal Gerald Johannes, know what it is to lead from the front. That is why he has thrown in his hat to be the City’s Ward 28 councillor candidate for Elsies River.

Johannes said he is confident that his many years of experience working to advocate and uplift the community from the sidelines will count in his favour come November 1, when residents will cast their ballots.

“I didn’t just wake up one morning and decide that I want to be a councillor, no, I have been a resident in this ward for years and I have witnessed first hand the blatant disregard for the people by the DA’s candidates.”

“There has been no development in this ward for years. No housing projects in over 30 years. The only development that has been taking place here is people converting their backyards into homes.

“We are even known as the community with the most backyard dwellings. Unemployment is rife, crime, GBV, not forgetting high council bills for water and electricity.”

“As a resident who loves this community, there’s nothing I wouldn’t do for it. I couldn’t sit by and watch the DA take another term. I needed to act and putting my name down as a candidate for councillor was the first step,” he said.

For his campaigning points, Johannes is promising to initiate housing projects, to afford residents who have been waiting for years, the opportunity to own their own homes.

“I want to resolve the ward’s water crisis, community safety, unemployment, uplift and revitalise ward 28’s local economy and tackle high municipal bills, which are are affecting the majority of our residents, even frail and impoverished pensioners.

“I’m running for councillor because it is my duty as a citizen to stand up for my community. To work hard so that they can have a normal standard of life. For our people to own homes, businesses, see their children grow up to be responsible citizens. We can’t keep waiting for the DA to give that to us,” said Johannes.

“I remember a few weeks ago, several backyard homes burnt to the ground at about 3 am. The councillor was called to the scene but did not pitch. I went there and worked with residents from that time until later in the day when we all saw our local councillor less than 40 metres away at a DA funeral accompanying the mayor. Mind you this was in the same street.”

“That’s just one of the many times when we have needed a leader, a doer with the community’s interests at heart and we didn’t get one. The time for the DA to rein over Elsies has to come to an end. I’m imploring our residents to act now and vote out the DA. I am able and willing to work for the people, I want the same things they want, from basic service delivery to development to economic upliftment.”

Johannes is currently the chairperson of the community’s local policing forum, an anti-GBV activist and is head of a community advice organisation, that works to assist residents with various issues.

[email protected]

Cape Argus

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