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President does not really care about the dire situation in which local government finds itself

President Cyril Ramaphosa does not really care about the dire situation in which local government in South Africa finds itself. While the Auditor-General (AG) issues shocking reports year after year on the state of affairs in municipalities countrywide, the President dedicated only about five sentences to the topic during his recent State of the Nation Address (SONA).

The reality is that there are more than 250 municipalities in the country that urgently need attention before any time or money is wasted on building the President's unrealistic "supercities".

The FF Plus wants to tell the President the tale of three cities as it will give him a good idea of what is actually happening on local government level.

 

SONA debate in parliament

 

 

The first is Welkom in the Matjhabeng Local Municipality; a town that will probably become the cadre capital if state capture realises its full potential. According to the AG, this city's fruitless expenditure amounted to a staggering R818 million in just three years.

Matjhabeng owes Sedibeng Water billions of rand and the water supplier is, in every practical sense, bankrupt. The Municipality has been stripped bare and residents are the ones paying the price for it.

Then Bloemfontein. Thanks to the ANC, the so-called "City of Roses", no longer has any roses, but only thorns and thistles. The Mangaung Metro Municipality is an abomination and was the first metro municipality to be placed under administration.

Its water debt also amounts to billions of rand and the city is frequently without water supply. Residents are paying for services that are not provided.

The President must go and look at the dilapidated and looted Mangaung to see the consequences of the Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) policy that he so strongly advocates.

The third is Kgetlengrivier where residents have obtained a court order and have now, to a certain degree, taken over service delivery. And then the President actually states in his SONA that the government is "focused" on appointing well qualified officials in local government.

But the municipal manager (Joseph Mogale) and all his managers are still in office. Is that the President's idea of well qualified officials and of accountability?

These are just three examples of the ANC's destructive cadre deployment policy. Through it all runs the golden thread of the ANC, its policy of BEE and cadre deployment.

Local communities must be given more control over local service delivery. But the ANC is determined to centralise; even on district level.

It is a direct attempt to obtain even greater control over local government, particularly with regard to tenders and projects, and the possible consequences are too terrifying to even ponder.

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