THE Gauteng government has spent over R100 million renovating the HM Pitje Stadium in Mamelodi, east of Tshwane but the facility is still not usable.
Gauteng Infrastructure Development MEC Jacob Mamabolo in response to a question from the Democratic Alliance’s Kingsol Chabalala revealed that the initial budget for the upgrades was R60 million but the cost ballooned to over R100 million.
Mamabolo added that there was no Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) conducted when the project started.
“The project was an upgrading of an existing facility and as a result, the EIA was not applicable. No amount to EIA practitioner was applicable whilst a total amount of R117 228 841.14 was paid to other service providers. The original budget amounted to R60 785 883.00. At the conclusion of the project, a total of R117 228 841.1.14 was paid on the project,” Mamabolo said in his response.
Chabalala said the project was yet another example of a colossal waste of public funds. He said the money could have been better spent on infrastructure development in Mamelodi.
“Of particular concern is that Mamelodi residents are still in the dark about the issues relating to the Stadium in Mamelodi West. The stadium had not been used since 2005. It remains noncompliant with safety and construction regulations and as such no occupational certificates have been issued by the City. Emergency and seating requirements are also not up to basic standards. The angle of the seating is dangerous and pitch visibility is obsolete in certain sections of the stands,” said Chabalala.
Chabalala added that the department had no plans to recover the funds from the contractors.
“The most shocking revelation by the MEC is that there were zero consequences for shoddy workmanship by the contractors appointed. No contractor was blacklisted from doing business with the government, and no criminal charges have been pursued,” he said.
Mamabolo in his response said the use of the stadium would be determined by the City of Tshwane as the custodians of it.