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Muyexe declared the poorest village in South Africa

News - Date: 05 June 2009

Written by: Victor Hlungwani / Viewed: 11866


The Minister for Rural Development and Land Reform, Gugile Nkwinti, his Deputy, Dr Joe Phaahla, and the Limpopo Premier, Cassel Mathale, launched the National Comprehensive Rural Development Programme at the Muyexe village outside Giyani in Limpopo two weeks ago.

The village was identified as one of the poorest villages in the country, with no basic services such water, electricity, proper roads and housing developments. The villagers depend on their livestock to survive, constantly battling challenges such as wild animals that attack and eat the cattle and goats. Muyexe village borders on the Kruger National Park. During the visit, villagers complained about having to buy water from people who control the boreholes.

“I was touched when I read the sad story in a daily newspaper about a mother who was breast-feeding a thin child from this village and they said the child suffered from malnutrition. So, we are here as government to come and assist this village,” said Minister Nkwinti. He said the government would assist the 250 households with tractors and other agricultural equipment to help them farm more productively and, by doing so, fight hunger.

Mr Nkwinti said the Limpopo premier and his team would visit the village from time to time to supervise the work and make sure the community members were getting better services. He said the rest of South Africa would be able to learn from Muyexe community and see whether the programme works efficiently or not.

Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale warned all government officials that if they sat in their offices without providing services to the community, they would lose their work “Our rural people deserve better services, the same as those who are staying in Sandton. We are going to work hard to develop this village, so that the whole country will learn from the experience,” said Mathale. He said that they planned to extend the programme to two more villages, namely Dingamazi and Qon’on’o.


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Muyexe village outside Giyani is one of the poorest villages in the country. Mack-son Masingi (72) has to carry water for long distances from the nearby stream just to be able to take a bath.


Victor Hlungwani


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