Soccer players tired of practising on long grass

Eastern Gunners Soccer FC players say this is the only place they can practise.

KwaThema – Eastern Gunners Soccer FC players are forced to brave the long grass on what they believe is their soccer pitch in Deep Level Landfill.

The team, it is alleged, has on numerous accounts pleaded with the ward councillor and the municipality to have the grounds scrubbed, but with no success.

Soccer player Jabu Jele says they are sick and tired of being forced to train on the overgrown field.

They allege the soccer grounds have not being scrubbed in months and they have to hire people from their own pockets to have it cleaned.

“We have to pay R250 just so we could have a soccer pitch to practise on.

“We have on numerous occasions spoken to the ward councillor and reported it to the CCC offices but to date we haven’t heard from them.

“They also promised to clean them just to keep us quiet. They only clean the outside of the soccer pitch, but not the overgrown grass on the actual soccer pitch,” he says.

Jabu says they do not have alternative soccer pitches to train on, because those in the area are all occupied.

“We are forced to brave the long grass because we don’t have anywhere to go.

“It is heart-breaking for us to see other soccer pitches being graded while we are stuck with a dirty ground,“ he says.

In his comment, Ekurhuleni spokesman Themba Gadebe says the venue in question is a fenced-off old landfill site which by law should not be accessed.

“The outside area has never been a soccer ground and the community dumps foreign elements on it and it could not be graded to establish a ground.

“We have a backlog on the grading of informal fields due to the lack of a sufficient number of graders.

“We have been prioritising informal roads due to the recent rainfalls,” he says.

“It has become impossible for the municipality to grade informal fields because of the lack of availability of graders.

“As part of a long-term solution, we are planning on acquire our own graders,” he says.

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Doreen Mokgolo

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