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Despite the short notice of less than a week, almost 200 people attended the Ingwelala Members’ Information Meeting called for Thursday 9th February at 6pm at Country Club Johannesburg at its Auckland Park location. No doubt the attendance would have been higher if we had used our “normal” or “regular” venue!
The information meeting was called to allow the acting Chairman to explain to the Members what had happened at Ingwelala on 18th January when the adjacent rivers flooded during an unprecedented period of rain – some nearly 400mm in 24 hours – and why the Directors subsequently closed Ingwelala under force majeure.
The General manager gave a personnel account of what had transpired, supported by photographs and a dramatic video showing the huge volume and fast speed of rushing brown water churning over the main road causeway. It is a wonder that the causeway survived the onslaught and we are fortunate that the situation was not exacerbated by a collapse.
The pictures described visually the high level of the flood waters in all the rivers across our properties, the high water levels (surely a new 100 year flood line!) and the extensive damage to both the banks of the rivers and adjacent bungalows. The material displayed, sans the video, is available on the Ingwelala website.
The acting Chairman announced the establishment of Project Dando (the name of the cyclone that occasioned the tremendous precipitation) and its 5 working groups who are to make recommendations for Ingwelala’s recovery when the Board meets on 25th February 2012:
• River Impoundments Sub Committee – dams upstream, river crossings
• Bungalow and Pool Restoration Sub Committee – bungalow structural matters, pool re-development
• Insurance Sub Committee – to advance the insurance claim with assessors and the insurance company
• Reserve Infrastructure and Restoration Sub Committee – boreholes, water reticulations, roads and facilities
• Member Communications Sub Committee – to keep all as best informed as possible
The Chairman will each Wednesday circulate to Members a traffic light scorecard reflecting progress on the following matters. All need to be green at the Board Meeting on 25th February for the Board to consider the limited and conditional re-opening of Ingwelala.
Milestones for re-opening Ingwelala:
• Elephant Fence Repaired to protect water reticulation restoration
• Water availability in Camp – 4 of the 5 boreholes fully operational and reticulated
• Camp roads repaired giving access to all Bungalows (for Game Viewer Vehicles)
• Main Road access temporarily repaired and sedans and heavy vehicles have access
• Stable electric power
The Directors answered several questions from the floor. General sentiment by Members was that a “Flood Levy” would be accepted to provide funds for the repair of uninsured damage, principally for roads and river crossings, with a view to restoring Ingwelala in the near term.
The Directors, The General Manager and the Members expressed their gratitude to the Management and Staff of Ingwelala for their tremendous efforts during “The 2012 Dando Floods” and in the weeks subsequently, and in particular for the protection John Llewellyn and his Team afforded Ingwelala.
by John Llewlyn