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The City of Johannesburg this week offered cooperatives and community-based companies in Region C two work packages with a combined value of more than R156 000 under the R3-billion Jozi@work mass empowerment and job-creation programme.

The two packages – one for tree-pruning and the other for miscellaneous clean-up – were presented to local residents by representatives of the Johannesburg City Parks & Zoo and of the Ecosystem Enhancement and Open Space Department at two separate community meetings on Wednesday, July 29 and Thursday, July 30.

Beneficiaries of the tree-pruning project, which is valued at R92 046 and offered by Johannesburg City Parks & Zoo, will have the responsibility of pruning a total of 293 trees in Randparkrif, Sharonlea, Sonneglans, Randparkridge, Weltevreden Park and Witpoortjie. It is envisaged the work will be carried out over a period of a month.

As part of the work, successful applicants will also be required to see to the removal of all tree debris, branches and leaves as well as litter from the areas concerned.
The second work package, commissioned by the Ecosystem Enhancement and Open Space Department, forms part of the City’s Sebenzela Emifula Project. It is valued at R64 908 and is expected to be carried out over three months.

The Sebenzela Emifula Project seeks to source workers from local communities with the intention of skilling them, building capacity and creating jobs. The work will involve, among other things, the removal of litter, debris control, grass cutting, riverine maintenance and herbaceous alien plant control. Both projects will be overseen and monitored by Johannesburg City Parks & Zoo officials to ensure the work meets set standards.

The Capability Support Agency (CSA) will provide the beneficiaries with the necessary equipment and assistance. Phindile Lakaje, the City’s Deputy Director for Integrated Service Delivery in Region C, and André Laubscher of the Johannesburg City Parks & Zoo, were on hand to clarify issues and field questions from local companies and individuals hoping to bid for the work packages.

Bambatha Sithole, chairman of the Tshepisong Business Forum, said although it was too early to say, there was a buzz and excitement about Jozi@work’s potential.
He said his forum, which consists of 48 members and 19 directors, had already been awarded two work packages under Jozi@work.
"We are still waiting to see the impact of the programme in our communities," he said.

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