Graham Barratt takes over Standards portfolio

We are pleased to introduce Graham Barratt, who has taken over the MDGA ExCom’s Standards portfolio.

Among other responsibilities, his new role includes:

· Working with ExCom’s Architecture Committee (Archcom) and our Standards inspector, Robbie Johnston, to ensures that all new buildings and building alterations conform to the MDGA’s building design regulations and constitution

· Assisting the Standards inspector in noting and taking remedial action where transgressions occur, and in encouraging residents to maintain their properties to an acceptable standard

· Working with residents and endeavouring to resolve any disputes.

Graham is certainly well qualified to take on the Standards portfolio. He has been involved with over 300 building projects of all sizes during his career and is a past member of the Rondebosch Ratepayers’ Association ExCom. A quantity surveyor by profession, he runs his practice, Barratt & Boyes Quantity Surveyors, from home. He is a born Capetonian, raised in the southern suburbs and educated at Rondebosch Boys’ Preparatory and High Schools and at the University of Cape Town.

Graham and his wife, Cheryl, have lived in the Marina for the last 16 years and enjoy the area’s relatively safe and laid-back life style. They have three children and five grand-children, all resident in the southern suburbs.

He looks forward to engaging with residents, and will be encouraging property maintenance as a way to improve the environment while also maintaining and raising property prices to the benefit of all residents.

Bee whisperer draws sting from Marina swarm

Security is important to all our residents and the MDGA has spent two years upgrading our security systems and adding more cameras. In addition, the MDGA gardening team has spent long hours clearing bush in the road reserve at the back of Battle Ridge to create a clear line of sight for the new cameras that we are putting in there.

Recently, however, a swarm of bees hampered efforts by the City of Cape Town (CoCT) to clear away the cuttings and chased away the security camera providers as they tried to work out the final camera position. One of the CoCT employees ended up in hospital with multiple bee stings. Enter Marina da Gama resident and beekeeper extraordinaire, Vincent Bristow.

On our walkthrough of the area, Vincent spotted the bees and went in for a closer inspection. It turns out that a large colony of bees had an underground hive in an old steel drum. It took a full day to get the bees into their new hive and they have now been relocated to their new home in Lakeside.

Image credits Vincent Bristow and John Donaldson.

Minutes and portfolio reports (Sep 2021)


1) Welcome and apologies – Welcome to Graham Barratt – taking on the Standards Portfolio to submit short Bio and photo to publish for members
a) Present – Patrick Mc Kenna, Paul Higgins, Richard Midgley, Lise Carswell, Nick Bode, Graham Barratt and Tharwah Davids
b) Apologies – Peter Allen still recovering
2) Unanimous Approval of Minutes of 10th August

3) Portfolio reports
3.1 Treasurer Bank Balances
3.2 Communications
3.3 Waterways
3.4 Events
3.5 Archcom
3.6 Standards
3.7 Environmental
3.8 Parks and Gardens
3.9 Security
3.10 Long-term projects
3.11 General

2 | Page
MDGA Exco Minutes 14 th September 2021 17 September 2021 Matters Arising
A) Resident Communications – Extensive resident communication regarding outstanding Subscription payments. Exco is determined to clear long outstanding’s – over R1350 (prior years and 2020 and 2021) and to this end whilst being a caring body – it is unfair for other residents having to subsidise non-paying residents, and thus we are actively targeting these delinquents. We have in last month made useful progress and anticipate further significant resolutions in September.
B) Waterways still closed – and we are awaiting further results. Nick raised a few issues. Residents are again advised that the first 2 m of waterways is their responsibility to clear. With very high nutritional load in the water, we are expecting a high volume of Ulva intestinalis – a type of stringy algae – so the clearing is even more important. The City has massively improved their sewerage leak detection and there are currently no leaks BUT waterways are still closed for all activities. – Pond Weed needs clear water and oxygen to flourish – so not ideal conditions for it.
Nick has many suggestions to assist with the maintaining of the waterways – regarding aerators and or pumps to oxygenate waterways and improve circulation, and is to present a rough costed proposal to Exco, for Exco to evaluate and determine – whether it is feasible for MDGA to fund possibly through Special Resolution, or via private donors or crowd funding donations. Any specialised residents willing to assist with solutions please contact MDGA Office to offer assistance.
C) Communications – Patrick is going to do an evaluation on the revenue stream as well as content generation and submit proposals
D) Budgets – RM will be providing Exco with revised budgets – – Tharwah, Janet and Richard will be meeting Auditor early next week – to get advice on – Cash flow model, when depreciation of cameras should be charged to P&L vs Ringfence in Balance Sheet, and better understanding on Bad Debt and revenue.
E) Security – Cameras are installed – but a high point signal communication problem should be resolved in the next week
F) The Marina Da Gama Association Christmas Carols – Lise authorised to employ capable person to handle The Marina Da Gama Association Father Christmas and Kiddies Christmas Party. Both these events are recognised Marina Da Gama Association events and planning is starting now for these 2 annual events. Suggestions and volunteers are welcome.

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MDGA Exco Minutes 14 th September 2021 17 September 2021
G) July Profit and Loss and budget to be published on web page
H) Minutes, Financials (August) and Agenda for September to be published on web page
General – concept of Island Based “food festival” will be explored by Nick – each island having different theme – utilising Public Open Spaces for residents to gather and move on foot from island to island. Possible food truck concept – Nick to advise Exco of what he would require to realise.
Patrick and Tharwah – to look into “music in the park” on Eastlake Island Drive public open space – as a kick off to lockdown relaxation.
Graham mentioned in the earlier years – around 2006/ and onwards – a regular get together in the Eastlake shopping centre – with big half drum fires and fancy dressing – to create cohesive Marina spirit – suggestions welcome.

Meeting finished at 19h08

  1. Date of next meeting – 12 th October 2021 at 18h00

PORTFOLIO REPORTS – 14 September 2021

Treasurer – bank balances: 1

Security: 1

Communications: 1

Parks and Maintenance: 1-2

Archcom: 2

Standards: 2

Treasurer, Compliance & Legal: 2

Waterways: 2


Bank Balances: as at 10/09/2021

Cheque A/c: R59,275.54

Archcom A/c: R331,859.40

Money Market A/c:R775,968.53

Total: R1,167,103.47

Monthly Crime Stats

UitsigOudevlei RdMDTP14.08.2122h00Friends slashed car tyres after visiting
UitsigShearwaterATT HB26.08.21During the daySomeone tried to force open windows in front and
at back


We have completed the website refresh but still need to include Graham Barrett’s profile.

Looking ahead, we will ramp up our efforts to sell more advertising with Janine Avery’s support.

Meanwhile, we continue refine our production and publishing processes.


Large load of compost purchased at a discount and transported by Peter Alen. This is use across the Marina open spaces where our garden reps ad gardeners are doing maintenance and creating new garden beds.


Archcom meeting was held on 09 September 2021 attended by Gordon Hart and me.

Five new plans were submitted, and four plans were approved. One submission needed some clarification or minor changes before our consent will be given. One sketch plan was approved.

No objection to one departure was dealt with.


Resolved incidents – 5

New infringements 10

Edit – 1

Treasurer, Compliance and Legal – THARWAH DAVIDS

– consideration of the financials

– meeting with Janet regarding the income accounts

– will be meeting with auditors to discuss the preparation of the cash flow statement etc during September.


Waterways  Portfolio Report

Sadly we are now at over 100 days and the water quality has improved but not enough to open the vlei for recreational use. It’s still early summer and already numerous reports and complaints are coming in regarding the algae growth. We will be seeing more growth of pondweed/ algae this summer season due to the extremely high nutrients that have come with all the sewage spills.

Please do your part and remember you are personally responsible to clear and remove the weed and algae for the first 2m of your property.

Meet the Marina gardening team

We’re proud to introduce the team that has been doing such fantastic work around the Marina’s parks and open spaces in recent months.

Led by Staffa Hussein, they are Kondwani Chawanda, Lester Andreck, Hastings Imran, Peter Chirwa and John Banda.

The team spends every Tuesday working in rotation between Uitsig, Park Island and Eastlake/Canon Island. Under the supervision of the MDGA’s four gardening reps – Andie Pycroft, Silvia Stringer, Koemi Rowe and Tina Roberts – they have made a real and very visible difference to our neighbourhood.

Commenting on the Marina gardeners’ contribution, Lise Carswell, who holds the MDGA ExCom’s Parks & Open Spaces portfolio, says: “I am so proud of the work Staffa and his team have done in the last year. The parks and open spaces are looking better than ever. Our fabulous garden reps are coming up with new ideas and really putting a lot of thought into keeping our beautiful suburb looking incredible.”

Hopefully, other residents agree with Lise’s assessment.

Introducing Staffa

When did you set up the Marina gardeners team?

We set it up in April 2021 after many discussions in 2020.

How long have you been in the gardening business?

I first got into the gardening business in 2009, when Marina da Gama was looking for a gardener and got my name from Link. Toni Joubert was the gardening rep at the time and taught me so much. I was also sent on a gardening course led by Gerri Goldblatt, which culminated in a visit to Kirstenbosch.

What are your main challenges?

Gardening in the sandy soils of the Cape Flats is always a challenge. My favourite plant is the restio because not even the southeaster can blow it out of its natural shape.

What have you enjoyed most about the job so far?

I learned so much from Toni Joubert while Richard Midgley and Scott Attfield also gave me a great deal of encouragement as ExCom members. Working with the four gardening reps has been another highlight. Our work is very varied and we do everything from tree pruning to waterwise gardening.

Can you tell us about your family?

I am married to Sophie and we live in Cape Town. We have four children, who are all in Malawi. Our first-born, Kondwani, is studying agribusiness. Our second-eldest, Hope, writes his matric next month, while their twin sisters, Annie and Fatima, are in Grade 9.

A final word?

Many thanks to the Marina residents for appreciating the work we do.

Why not hire a Marina gardener?

If your garden needs a pre-summer lift, why not hire one or more members of the Marina gardening team? The quality of their work speaks for itself and they are always keen to pick up extra jobs wherever possible. From routine maintenance and clearing to more complex tasks, they are available any day – except, of course, Tuesday. Staffa charges a daily rate of R300 for each team member working an 8-hour day between 8.30 and 16.30, with one hour for lunch. To find out more, give Staffa a call on 074 416 4109.

Pampering Park Island for the summer

A lot has been happening in the parks and gardens of Marina da Gama. On Park Island, the team has been working hard! Your Park Island garden representative, Silvia Stringer, received a bakkie load of mulch on Tuesday and spent an entire day mulching the flower beds. They look awesome and are now ready for the summer sunshine. Silvia might need a massage following all that heavy lifting!

Our pleas to Eugene Rayners, Parks and Recreation for the City of Cape Town (CoCT), were heard and you will see the brand new and improved seesaw in the kids play park. Thanks very much to Eugene!

Kondwani from the gardening team spent the day pressure hosing a long neglected public wall in Park Island. Residents rallied to assist and painting will continue on Sunday.