Just a short time ago, the market was run-down, dirty, in general disrepair and rudderless, with some farmers refusing to supply it. About two years ago, the Institute of Market Agents of South Africa (Imasa) stepped in with its Project Rebirth and the market received R25 million for repairs and refurbishment.
As happens in such matters, a long process had to be followed, and in the interim two significant events took place. First of all, the department of agriculture took over Project Rebirth and began focusing on a number of markets around the country,
including Springs. The other positive event was the appointment of market manager
Steve Ramoshaba to run Springs. He has genuinely wanted to make it work and has applied himself with enthusiasm and vigour to the task. From what I’ve gleaned, he took on the slow, cumbersome municipal processes one by one and managed to change most of them. The result is the newlook Springs Market.
The administration block has been refurbished and a friendly receptionist greets one on arrival. Consignment control sports a proper entrance with well-marked lanes for incoming trucks.
Farmers delivering produce are now assured of proper consignment control – always the first step towards good stock control on a market. The sales hall has been transformed with new roofing and lighting, making the place look more welcoming and professional.
I understand that work is continuing on the cold rooms and banana ripening rooms.
Upbeat, smiling employees
A highly significant feature for me was the entirely new attitude of the market agents I spoke to. Not long ago, they were invariably sullen and negative. Now they are cheerful and positive, and full of praise for the new market manager. This is no fairy story – real improvements have been made and under Ramoshoba’s leadership more are on their way.