Barry Downard, Dargle Conservancy, KZN.
Congratulations from the Dargle Conservancy in KZN. VeldTalk is always inspirational. Keep it up! It's a delight to see the commitment to do good, and you guys in the RNC really have the commitment. Just imagine what this world would be like if everyone had the same desire to look after our surroundings!

Our good news is that it looks like 2 500 ha of indigenous forest and endangered mistbelt grassland is about to get Nature Reserve status. Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife and the respective landowners are finalizing the agreements right now.

(Congratulations! A vast amount of hard work must have gone into this venture. Ed.)

Trevor Toye, Chairman, Mnandi Monavoni Ratepayers Association, Knoppieslaagte wrote to the Tshwane City Manager on 11 March 2010:
Dear Sir,
Tshwane has not collected the refuse this week in Knoppieslaagte, which falls in Ward 48. Not only that, Council has removed the agricultural rebate on our rates and taxes. People in our area are getting nailed with R4 000 to R5 000 additional on their bills. This is in an area where we get power directly from Eskom, most of us rely entirely on boreholes for water and there is no sewerage provided by Council. Not only that, the roads don’t get maintained. So I ask, what are we paying rates and taxes for? We get to pay more and receive less.

Audrey Smith, Hills and Dales
Taking a walk with my dog along the banks of the Jukskei River, I am forced to navigate through rubbish at every twist and turn of the river. It is choked with discarded shoes, broken plastic furniture and bottles, computer parts, discarded food wrappers, toys, tins and clothing coming from informal settlements upstream. A friend of mine is a water resource specialist who has done developmental work throughout the SADC region. He confirms the opinion of other aid workers that really poor communities do not have a rubbish problem in these countries because everything is recycled and re-used. (Letter shortened)

Responses to Country Roads and Potholes (VeldTalk, February):
Pam Webster, Knoppieslaagte

And here I was wingeing about our roads! The rain damaged the roads so much I had to navigate my little Polo through lakes where I knew full well there were huge potholes, just not where. And R11 000 in unplanned car expenses in January. Ouch. But then I looked at your mud – oh my goodness, I should feel really happy.

Robin Jarman of Kyalami sent this pic and asked: “Have you counted the giraffe in the Conservancy lately?”

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