Thabong

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Thabong
"Boitumelo junction shopping mall at Dr phakathi drive in Thabong".jpg
Boitumelo Junction shopping mall on Dr Phakathi Drive in Thabong
South Africa Free State location map.svg
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Thabong
South Africa adm location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Thabong
Coordinates: 27°57′58″S26°48′40″E / 27.966°S 26.811°E / -27.966; 26.811 Coordinates: 27°57′58″S26°48′40″E / 27.966°S 26.811°E / -27.966; 26.811
Country South Africa
Province Free State
District Lejweleputswa
Municipality Matjhabeng
Area
[1]
  Total29.45 km2 (11.37 sq mi)
Population
 (2011) [1]
  Total126,013
  Density4,300/km2 (11,000/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)
[1]
   Black African 99.3%
   Coloured 0.3%
   Indian/Asian 0.2%
   White 0.1%
  Other0.1%
First languages (2011)
[1]
   Sotho 71.7%
   Xhosa 15.7%
   Zulu 2.5%
   English 2.3%
  Other7.8%
Time zone UTC+2 (SAST)
PO box
9870

Thabong (meaning 'place of happiness' in Southern Sotho) is the second largest township after botshabelo in the Free State province in South Africa. The township was established during the years of segregation of black people as well as the township of Bronville for coloured people adjacent to the city of Welkom, to accommodate workers at the world's richest gold mines.

Contents

The township forms part of Matjhabeng Local Municipality in the Lejweleputswa District Municipality, that includes Welkom. The township is filled with diversity of people due to people who came from various countries like Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, etc. to work in mines of Goldfields. The most spoken languages in Thabong is Sesotho followed by Xhosa.

Geography

Communities

Thabong consists of 49 suburbs of which can classified as follow

The number of middle-class black South Africans or so called Black Diamonds in the township has risen dramatically with suburbs like Oppenheimer Park, Jerusalem Park, Mshongoville, Soweto and Las Vegas.

Demographics

Population distribution

Today the townships of Thabong and Bronville have a population of approximately 200,000 residents. Usually Thabong is referred to the combination of both Thabong and Bronville (former Coloured township) though Bronville is classified as an independent township of Welkom.

Economy

Mining

The majority of the people work in the richest mines of the Goldfields since the township was formed originally to accommodate people who worked in the mines.

Retail

People from both Thabong and Bronville do their shopping in Welkom, however, at the rate at which the township of Thabong is growing a new shopping mall, "Boitumelo Junction" has been opened. At 25,500 m2, it is anchored by Shoprite, Boxer and the usual others.

The most fashionable and lovely place of interest especially during December Holidays is Shopong Tsa Kgale meaning 'Old shops' That's where Thabong Kids figuratively or 'Black Diamonds' meet to enjoy themselves especially the ones who have moved out of Thabong to places like Johannesburg, Sandton, Randburg, Roodepoort, Pretoria, etc.

Other prominent places include

  • Black Joint Pub
  • Afro-vibe
  • The Zone
  • Georgies Lodge
  • The Side Bar
  • Tiamos restaurant and bar
  • Motsorotso Tavern
  • Tilo Tavern

Culture and contemporary life

Community Service Centres

Music

Kasi Rap which is a style of Hip-hop specific to South Africa is prominent in the Township and Amapiano.

Sport

Sport Centre - A municipal sport centre offering boxing, rugby, soccer, netball, tennis, hockey, cricket, bowling, swimming and snooker facilities

Stadium Zuka Baloyi Stadium, a multi-sport facility, that is currently mostly used for soccer.

Law and Government

Government

Informal settlements are being transformed into formal settlements especially the one of Hani Park near the coloured township of Bronville and multiple Extensions have been formed from Hani park all the way to Straighting near the Bridge (Ext 15 to Ext 21)

Education

Schools and libraries

Primary schools

  • Iketsetseng
  • Tsakani Primary
  • Tseolopele Primary
  • Dirisanang Primary
  • Mojaho Primary
  • Seabo Primary
  • Bofihla Primary
  • Daluvuyo Primary
  • Lehakwe
  • Mokgwabong
  • Lemotso
  • Dr. Mgoma
  • Dirisanang
  • Moramaphofu
  • Embonisweni
  • Thabong school
  • Tswelopele
  • Setshabelo
  • Hlolohelo
  • Lenyora
  • Thembekile
  • Bronville primary
  • Mantshebo

Secondary schools

  • Leseding Technical school
  • Lenakeng Comprehensive school
  • Lebogang secondary school
  • Lephola secondary school
  • Teto secondary school
  • Thotagauta secondary school
  • Lekgarietse secondary school
  • Letsete secondary school
  • Nanabolela secondary school
  • Welkom secondary school
  • Bronville High

Colleges and universities

Tertiary level

Tosa F.E.T college situated near the suburb of Jerusalem Park is geared towards employment opportunities with Engineering been the main focus

Infrastructure

Health systems

Thabong hosts Bongani Regional Hospital and together with Bronville host various primary care clinics, some are open 24 hours per day.

Bongani Regional Hospital

Bongani provides specialized secondary services and admits patients referred by Primary Health Care Institutions from surrounding towns and District Hospitals. Services include:

  • 24-hour casualty service
  • Level 2 adult and child care
  • Maternity
  • Paediatrics
  • Theatre
  • Neonatal ICU and ICU
  • Radiography
  • Medical and Surgical ward
  • Othopaedics
  • Septic ward
  • Burns unit
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Dispensary
  • Physiotherapy
  • Social Worker
  • Speech and Hearing therapy
  • Oncology
  • Ophthalmology
  • Psychology
  • Renal unit
  • Dental
  • Occupational Health
  • Tsoanelo (ARV Treatment)

Other facilities

  • Academic Health Complex
  • Welkom Satellite
  • Pilot project site for academic medical training registrars in conjunction with the Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of the Free State.

Notable people

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References

  1. 1 2 3 4 "Main Place Thabong". Census 2011.