On 14 June 2011 President Jacob Zuma addressed Parliament on the occasion of the Budget Vote Debate of the Presidency. We have selected some key areas of his speech, relevant to the long awaited “Turn around Strategy” of CoGTA.
“On 18 May we held the fourth democratic local government elections. The elections illustrated the importance that South Africans are beginning to place on this sphere of government, and the depth of their concerns with service delivery and municipal accountability. The political parties, the citizens, the Independent Electoral Commission and government departments, worked together to produce one of South Africa’s most exciting and competitive local government elections. Local government became everybody’s business and we have to maintain that collaborative spirit for us to succeed. We have emerged from the elections with a changed local government landscape.
There are eight instead of six metropolitan municipalities, with district municipalities decreasing from 46 to 44, while local municipalities decreased from 231 to 226. Our goal is to achieve a responsive, accountable, effective and efficient local government system by 2014 in terms of the delivery agreement for local government. With the election behind us and new councils inaugurated, now is the time to focus firmly on implementing the Local Government Turnaround Strategy. The strategy provides a number of immediate solutions. We have to address the immediate financial and administrative problems in some municipalities. The findings from the Auditor General’s report for the 2010/11 financial year indicate that of the 237 municipal audit reports currently available, only 57 municipalities showed some improvement. Some remained unchanged while others have actually regressed.
Efforts to strengthen municipal audits continue through Operation Clean Audit, with a target of clean and unqualified reports by 2014. We also plan to tighten and improve the supply chain management system to eliminate possibilities of fraud and corruption. Most importantly, infrastructure backlogs should be reduced significantly. Citizens must have access to affordable universal basic services such as water, housing, electricity, sanitation, refuse removal and others. To better coordinate and support the provision of housing at local level, government has begun to accredit metros and top performing district municipalities to perform the housing function in support of the Department of Human Settlements.
In March 2011, six Metros and two district municipalities were accredited to deliver housing programmes. By March this year, two hundred and thirty four municipalities had filled the municipal manager posts, representing 82% of filled posts nationally. A total of 242 chief financial officer posts have also been filled, representing 85% of filled posts nationally. A total of 218 technical services or engineer posts were filled representing 77 percent of the filled posts nationally, while 120 municipalities have filled development and town planning posts. This should contribute positively to an improvement in the operations of local government. The turnaround strategy will help us to restore the confidence of citizens in our municipalities. They are key institutions through which government will improve the lives of our people Our focus on local government is part of a broader campaign to improve efficiency in government and to build a performance-oriented developmental state. It was for this reason that we established the performance monitoring and evaluation as well as national planning functions in the Presidency.
Substantial progress has been made by the two Ministries. Last Thursday, the National Planning Commission released its first set of outputs, a diagnostic document analysing the key challenges that confront us in fighting poverty and inequality. The report forms the basis for a national dialogue on how to fix the problems raised in the report. Over the next three months, the commission will lead a public engagement process. We call on South Africans from all walks of life and from all organised formations to contribute to the development of a national plan for the country. Only with the support and active participation of all South Africans can we work towards a truly united, non-racial, non-sexist and prosperous society”
- Mopresitente Jacob Zuma o ile a hlalosa ka kakaretso ka ga seterathetsi sa tsa lefapha la segae. Re tlilo go letsibisa ka bonakwana ka tsa ditshelete le tsa peakanyo le mathata ao a akareditsego memasepala e mengwe.
Mopresutente o rile mo polelong ya gagwe ya tsa ditshelete, ge a e tsebisa ka palamenteng. Mominisetara wa motshwara-o-swere wa lefapa la koporaite Government, Nathi Mthethwa, o rile lefapa la selegae le tlo etela memasepala kamoka ya tsa lefapha la tsa selegae. Mathata ao a lego mo go memasepala e mengwe, yeo e swanago le dikoloto le mathata ao badudi ba lebanego nao ka sebaka se.
Gona bjale memasepala e kolota ditshelete tseo di lekanago dimilione tse masometshelapedi tsa diranta tseo e lego tsa direlo-se-legae.
- President Jacob Zuma het aangekondig dat die omkeer strategie vir plaaslike regering onmiddellik ingestel gaan word in ‘n poging om die finansiële en administratiewe probleme in sommige munisipaliteite op te los. Hy het die begrotingsrede van die Presidensie in die Nasionale Regering gelewer.
Die waarnemende Minister van Koöperatiewe Regering, Nathi Mthethwa, het gister gesê sy departement sal alle plaaslike munisipaliteite besoek om die omvang van skuld en uitdagings vas te stel waarmee hulle te kampe het. Tans word munisipaliteite minstens 62-miljoen rand vir dienste geskuld.