07 November 2019 - NW1110
Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development
Whether her department has put mechanisms in place to improve leadership and administrative capabilities of (a) municipalities, (b) municipal officials and (c) councillors to assist with appeals resulting from the decisions of the district municipal planning tribunals, especially in the Northern Cape; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?
(a),(b),(c) Yes. The Department, through the office of the branch responsible for Spatial Planning and Land Use Management (SPLUM) in the Northern Cape, has made extensive interventions incuding the convening of the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Forum since 2016, which is held on a quarterly basis to discuss various challenges experienced in the province on the implementation of the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act, Act No 16 of 2013 (SPLUMA). Extensive training on the SPLUMA has been undertaken for all municipalities as well as individual training sessions upon request by local municipalities in the Northern Cape. This included focussed training on appeal related matters. In addition the Department has provided municipalities with different spatial planning tools, guidelines and training material including the following:
- SPLUMA Manuals for Appeal Authorities,
- SPLUMA Core Training manuals,
- SPLUMA Manuals for Municipal Planning Tribunals,
- SPLUMA Manuals for Authorised Officials in terms of section 35(4) of SPLUMA, and
- SPLUMA Manuals for Councillors.
The Department has also formed an intergovernmental team of spatial planning officials in the province spearheaded by its SPLUM branch and including the Office of the Premier, the Department of Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs (COGHSTA), the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) and the Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent (MISA). This intergovernmental team, co-ordinated by the Department, has been responsible to support local municipalities to improve leadership and administrative capabilities of municipalities, municipal officials and councillors in the implementation of SPLUMA.