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Power plant discussed

A $10 billion humanitarian investment will be made to start a waste-to-power electrification plant in Kroonstad.

Imperial Investments, an international company, has appointed the forum Moqhaka for the People (MFP) as agents to establish a plant where hundreds of locals can benefit with employment opportunities and in which Kroonstad can be a world class leader in energy supply.

Spiro Khoury, chairperson of MFP, invited the Moqhaka Municipal councillors, residents and role players to a first public participation meeting – where members of the public have a 60% say – on Wednesday (05/12) in the Old Town Hall.

All councillors were invited, but only members of the DA, Freedom Front Plus and Cope attended. Some of the ANC councillors replied that they were simply not interested in a public participation meeting at all, Khoury said to Kroon News.

After the meeting, Khoury and members of the MFP’s management were asked to go to the police station where a charge of trespassing against the MFP was to be laid for trespassing on municipal property.

Khoury said he and Mthunzi Mthwalo, director of Corporate Services, discussed the matter with the station commander.

Khoury said no charge was laid and the matter was resolved in a friendly manner.

Dika Kheswa, municipal spokesperson, told Kroon News that a charge for trespassing was laid because the MFP held a meeting at the Old Town Hall, which was “an illegal gathering” and that the municipality can not get the keys to the premises from the former Kroonstad Business and Tourism (KB&T).

A letter, dated 7 December and of which Kroon News has a copy, read that Khoury and the secretary were informed by Mthwalo that the lease of the Old Town Hall with KB&T has been terminated.

Kheswa said the municipality does not have a lease with the MFP and “consequently the MFP does not have the right, permission and/or authority to occupy or to use the Old Town Hall as it is the property of the municipality”.

Khoury refuses to negotiate with Municipal Manager Mncedisi Mqwathi on the grounds that Mqwathi lied about his qualifications and that the MFP does not recognise him as the municipal manager.

Khoury stands firm that the meeting was held under the public participation process which was first introduced by the ANC Government in 1998 under the leadership of late Pres. Nelson Mandela.

The agenda was on three discussion points: the presenta­tion of the power plant project, the requirements to move forward and the qualifications of municipal officials, regarding new legislation.

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