A new state of the art library worth R24.9 million was opened by Gauteng Premier David Makhura in Saulsville, Atteridgeville on Tuesday last week.
Accompanied by MEC of Sport, Arts, Culture & Recreation, Mbali Hlophe and MEC of Infrastructure Development and Property Management, Tasneem Motara Premier Makhura said the new library is part of the Gauteng government’s efforts in bringing services closer to people.
“I am very happy today because this community of Atteridgeville has a new library, as a community we must be educated, libraries are the pillars and cornerstone of knowledge, the first act of empowering our community is to offer education information that’s why we build schools and libraries,” said Premier Makhura.
He expressed disappointment on why it took the government five years to complete the project which was initially conceived in 2015.
“The reason why we delay when we build projects is because those who call themselves a business forum come and make disruptions by demanding 30% of subcontracts from the main contractor’s. This happens when we are building projects like hospitals. I want you to know that in Johannesburg we are arresting them,” said Makhura.
The premier promised community members jobs from local projects and to support small businesses.
“Community projects are not for African Nation Congress (ANC) members only or any particular party. Our projects are for all unemployed members of the community”. Premier Makhura said.
The premier cautioned members of the community not to destroy government infrastructure during protests.
“Sometimes members of the community are the problem because when you strike you demolish schools and libraries. From now on when we erect any building and you destroy it we are no longer going to rebuild it again. Facilities like this are yours and you’re the ones responsible for its protection.” said Premier Makhura.
MEC Mbali Hlophe who handed over the facility to the department of Sports said libraries accommodate all members of the community.
“Libraries are not only for people who can read or write but you must also involve the participation of elderly people, elderly people ought to take part in telling stories to children in libraries,” said MEC Hlophe.
One of the residents, Ben Mathe, expressed his gratitude for the new library. Mathe said he believed it would make a positive impact in his community.