Hansard: NA: Mini-plenary 2
House: National Assembly
Date of Meeting: 13 May 2021
No summary available.
MINI PLENARY - NATIONAL ASSEMBLY THURSDAY, 13 MAY 2021
VOTE NO 3 AND 15 – COGTA
PROCEEDINGS OF MINIPLENARY SESSION – NATIONAL ASSEMBLY CHAMBER
Watch video here: Vote 3 & 15: Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs
Members of the mini-plenary session met in the on the virtual platform in the National Assembly Chamber at 14:00.
The House Chairperson (Mr M L D Ntombela) took the Chair and requested members to observe a moment of silence for prayers or meditation.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon members, before we proceed I would like to remind you that the visual mini plenary is deemed to be in the precinct of Parliament and constitutes a meeting of the National Assembly for debating purposes only. In addition to the rules of virtual sitting, the rules of the National Assembly including the rules of debate apply; members enjoy the same powers and privileges that apply in a sitting of the National Assembly.
Members should equally note that anything said in the virtual platform is deemed to have been said to the House and may be ruled upon. All members who have logged in shall be considered to be present and are requested to mute their microphones and only unmute when recognised to speak. This is because the mics are very sensitive and will pick up noise which might disturb the attention of other members.
When recognised to speak please unmute the microphone and connect your video. Members may make use of the icon on the bar at the bottom of their screens which has an option that allows a member to put up his/her hand to raise points of order. The secretariat will assist in alerting the Chairperson to members requesting to speak.
When using the virtual system, members are urged to refrain or desist from unnecessary points of order or interjections.
Debate on Budget Vote 3 & 15 – Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs:
The MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS: Hon Chair, Deputy Minister Bapela and other Deputy Ministers who are here, hon chairperson and members of the portfolio committee, hon members, chairperson of the National House Traditional Leaders, chairperson of the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities, members of the provincial executive committees, chairperson of the Municipal Demarcation Board and its members, president of the South African Local Government Association, chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission, IEC; directors-general of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Department of Traditional Affairs, Chief Executive Officer, ceo, of Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent, MISA.
Today we stand in front of you and before the nation to present Budget Votes 3 and 15 as proud servants of our people. We do so proud of our achievements and cognisant of the challenges that lie ahead.
Today is 27 years and three days since the inauguration of our first democratically elected President uTata Nelson Mandela.
We recall that on that occasion of Tata said:
We pledge ourselves to liberate all our people from the continuing bondage of poverty, deprivation, suffering, gender and other discrimination.
We also reiterate the words of former Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan: “Extreme poverty anywhere is a threat to human security everywhere”. To these words, we add that injustice anywhere in the world is a threat to human security everywhere.
We take this opportunity to denounce the recent attacks by the Israelis and renew our solidarity to the Palestinian people’s legitimate struggle for freedom. We also call for the cessation of hostilities.
We celebrate 150 years of a fighter and defender of justice, Mam’Charlotte Mannye Maxeke. Her exemplary life in struggle and service to the people, inspires us to act selflessly. Her legacy compels us to stand on the side of the masses of our
people who are still hungry, poor, unemployed, unequal, discriminated and economically excluded.
These budgets lay a solid foundation and other budgets to set us on a path towards building resilient, safe, sustainable, prosperous, cohesive, connected and climate-smart communities.
We also subscribe to the truth as laid by our former ANC President comrade OR Tambo who once said:
It is inconceivable for liberation to have meaning without a return of the wealth of the country to the people as a whole. To allow the existing economic forces to retain their interests intact is to feed the roots of racial supremacy and exploitation, and does not represent even the shadow of liberation.
Vote 3 sets aside over R100,8 billion in the 2021-22 financial year; R96 billion of that allocation is constitutes transfers and subsidies to municipalities, in the main.
Vote 15 allocates R173,3 million to support developmental traditional leadership which promotes participatory democracy and rural development as well as agriculture.
We confront these daunting tasks in the midst of the biggest pandemic and economic crisis since the Spanish Flu of 1918 and the Great Depression of the 1930.
Covid has, therefore, placed added pressure on government services. Despite these pressures our internationally acclaimed response to COVID-19 has stood the test of time. It has confirmed the resilient and fighting spirit of this great nation.
The President in the state of the nation address likened this spirit to that of the Fynbos, which “Can adapt to dry, hot summers and cold rainy winters ... is wondrous in its diversity”.
Indeed, our response has been adaptive and has harnessed our nation’s diversities. Guided by the Disaster Management Act and the Risk Adjusted Strategy which have been strengthened by the sacrifices made by millions of our people.
However, the war has not been won. There is an ever present danger that the rate of infections may rapidly increase. Even as we roll out the mass vaccination programme, vulnerabilities are high, particularly amongst the young. More than ever before, we must adhere to the protocols of masking, washing hands, sanitizing and maintaining a safe social distance.
We extend our condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of MECs, Members of Parliament and Legislatures and councillors as well as community members who have lost their lives and loved ones. Those include traditional leaders such as King Goodwill Zwelithini ka Bhekuzulu, King Victor Thulare Thulare and Queen Noloyiso Sandile, who have succumbed to covid-related illnesses. We also take this opportunity to extend our condolences to the Zulu Royal Family who recently lost the Queen Regent, Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu, due to non-covid illness.
In implementing the District Development Model, DDM, in the pilot sites we have also committed to training more than 1 000 young people in partnership with the Department of Rural Development. We are pleased to give you progress and announce that so far 554 young people have completed their training in
agriculture-related areas such the production and processing of maize, vegetables, beef, dairy and pork. These young people will either be placed in agricultural institutions or will be supported to start community-based initiatives.
Three-hundred and nineteen young people have been trained in a range of non-agricultural related areas, including small business management, environmental waste management, hospitality, construction and manufacturing. Of these young people: 73 have been provided business opportunities by the King Sabata Dalindyebo Municipality, 25 have been absorbed by the eThekwini Metro and 100 have been absorbed by the Wholesale and Retail Sector Education and Training Authority, Seta, who will provide them with start-up capital. In Waterberg, a further 53 young people are being trained in small business management, environmental waste management and hospitality.
In order to reverse the apartheid spatial planning legacy, we have allocated R2,9 billion in the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework, MTEF, period to the OR Tambo District. This allocation has enabled the implementation of 19 water projects, 12 sanitation projects and 47 road projects. These
will be complemented by 12 community implemented projects to the value of R173 million, including the secondary bulk water project in Mqanduli.
Indeed, we are hard at work. Through our recently launched partnership with the United Nations we have assembled Business Solutions Centres. The centres will unlock the necessary value chains for decent work and sustainable development. Through the centres, community driven businesses, Small, Micro and Medium Enterprises SMMEs and co-operatives will receive capacity building and support in areas such as agriculture, the oceans economy, tourism, energy and the green economy.
We undertook visits to several districts including Harry Gwala, iLembe in Zululand and Alfred Nzo in the Winnie Madikizela Municipality in Zululand and OR. Together with the champions, some of these visits have been accompanied by the delivery of much needed services. For instance, when we visited the Abaqulusi Local Municipality in Zululand, there we launched the Water Supply Infrastructure for Bhokwe in ward 5 in the Abaqulusi Local Municipality. This innovative supply and water filter system costs a fraction of building dams and larger reservoirs. There is also a Water Treatment Works Plant
to the benefit of the residents of eMondlo, who live in wards 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20.
We are a responsive and caring government, therefore, we had set aside close to R618,9 million in national and municipality allocations to address the water and sanitation challenges.
Through this allocation, MISA and the Department of Water and Sanitation have impacted on 920 632 households in 205 municipalities. The households have been beneficiaries of the
15 487 water storage tanks, 1 382 water tankers and 235 boreholes.
But at the same time our visits have also brought to the fore the lived reality of water injustices which are part of us as a result of us being the 30th driest nation in the world. This reality is compounded by the legacy of apartheid and the infrastructure maintenance shortcomings. These have resulted in the residents of rural South Africa and less affluent areas having no access to water. To address this, we are pleased to announce that the Municipal Infrastructure Grant, MIG, receiving municipalities are now permitted to spend up to 10% of their budgets in urgent water and sanitation repairs and
refurbishments. This is over and above the 8% norm of maintenance work.
We are also paying particular attention to closing the gender gap. This gap has seen an underrepresentation of women in all economic sectors and the undervaluation of unpaid care work, which is largely conducted by women. Consequently, all the plans developed in the context of the DDM carry with them gender responsive budgets, targets and indicators. If we cannot attach this gender approach to our activities and budgets, we will never be able to maintain sight on gender equality. For us this is not an act of charity but a recognition that no country can claim to be free until it’s women are free; as once said by President OR Tambo.
By focusing on the interrelated pillars of the skills revolution, unlocking economic value chains, social transformation and service delivery enhancement, greater impact will be guaranteed. Ultimately, we intend to transform the economic landscape and ownership patterns in the districts. This we will achieve through creating a new crop of black industrialists who will be at the forefront of creating local jobs and economic development.
Already, the National House of Traditional Leaders has launched the Invest Rural Master Plan which seeks to optimise the rural industrial structure by availing over 1,5 million hectares of land. The Invest Rural Master Plan will change the social and economic landscape of South Africa. It will reverse the colonial and apartheid established migration patterns, such that people will migrate out of rural South Africa out of choice not desperation. Deputy Minister Bapela will elaborate on this ground breaking initiative.
The Community Works Programme, with all its challenges, remains an important lifeline for a huge number of people. The key challenges in this programme relate to the administration and model which favours a select few Non-governmental organizations, NGOs, or non-profit organizations, NPOs. We have turned the corner with regard to the administrative challenges and are recording progress in key areas such as the on time payment of participants. Additionally, we have enhanced the Management Information System so that it can interface with other government systems such as the home affairs system and persal. This will enable us to identify fraudsters and corrupt officials in that system.
Once we have finalised the remodelling we will be able to identify and target community-based initiatives. Once identified we intend to upskill the participants in key areas such as agriculture, paving of roads, fixing of potholes, fisheries, to name but a few. Once trained we intend to exit the participants by providing them with employment or supporting their SMMEs and co-operatives. In so doing, we will be able to pave a way for new cycles of participants. This year we have targeted 250 000 participants.
The DDM sets us on a long range planning path which requires the attainment of short and medium term goals. In this regard, work is afoot in the pilot sites where we are finalising the One Plans and One Budgets. The plans also make a case for the development of the Oceans Economy and South Africa’s coastline.
Consequently, the Premier of KwaZulu-Natal, in this year’s state of the province address, announced the development of the entire KwaZulu-Natal Eastern Sea Board, which includes the Districts of Ugu, iLembe and King Cetshwayo. This development is to be complemented by the ongoing work undertaken in the Eastern Cape. All this and all our plans will require Inter-
Provincial and Inter-Governmental planning collaboration and implementation. We have met with the two provinces separately and will soon have a joint meeting and then their districts. Last month, the Premier of Limpopo also convened the national and provincial political champions for Limpopo districts.
Going forward, we will prioritise the ten poorest districts. The government cannot develop these localities alone. We need the inputs of our communities, civil society, the private sector, investors and international partners.
According to Stats SA, only 45% of households can keep up with water payments. Unemployment is on the increase with it reaching a record high of 32,5% as is poverty with 60% of our population living below the upper poverty line. This, together with the negative effects of covid, has resulted in residents being unable to keep up with their payments. Thus, the debt to and by municipalities are on the rise.
The increase debt is also compounded by losses suffered by municipalities which are as the result of not maintaining and repairing municipal infrastructure. For instance, municipalities buy water but before they can sell it big
proportion is lost it through leaks and old pipes. To this end, we have agreed with the National Treasury that municipalities can use up to 10% of the R55,3 billion we have allocated for the various grants over the MTEF. The complexities of accessing these grants, the reallocation rubrics and the historic underspending has also led us to explore alternatives with the National Treasury.
It is critical that the resources entrusted to us by the public are effectively and efficiently used. We are pleased to announce that the Department of Traditional Affairs and MISA have maintained their clean audits and that the Department of Co-operative Governance has registered an improvement moving from a disclaimer to a qualified audit. We are not yet there. We will not rest until all our departments receive unqualified and clean audits.
The recent Tropical Cyclone Eloise visited seven provinces and
31 of our Districts, leaving behind untold destruction and hardships; 53 people have lost their lives and three people are still missing. We wish to extend our condolences to those who have lost their loved ones.
In future we can avoid these miseries by strengthening our preventative and responsive measures. It is, therefore, important that the provinces and municipalities ensure that they do not build on flood lines; that they must also assist communities to ensure that the structures they construct are disaster and hazard resilient. All of us have the responsibility to heed the warnings when it comes to disasters.
An instrumental forum in minimising fatalities and casualties from Tropical Storm Eloise was the Inter-Governmental Committee on Disaster Management which involved all spheres of government. Going forward, we intend to reinforce the operating model and framework of the disaster management. This will also entail the convening of the National Disaster Management Advisory Forum, as provided for by the National Disaster Management Act. We are also unlocking current impediments with the National Treasury which include the removal of the requirement for the issuance of a declaration prior to the flow of funds.
The Traditional and Khoi-San Leadership Act commenced on the 1st of April, we are in the process of appointing the
associated commission. We are also grateful for the difficult work undertaken by the portfolio committee and Parliament to finalise the Municipal Structures Bill. It is also our intention to finalise for the consideration of the House of Municipal Demarcation Authority Bill.
Despite the challenges presented by covid the Demarcation Board managed to hand over its work to the IEC. We are, therefore, confident that because of the experience we have gained in the various by-elections; we are ready for the 2021 Local Government Elections. These 147 by-elections which have run between November and March were in 133 wards and in all provinces, involving more than 800 000 voters.
We will also use the 19th May polls which involve 40 wards in seven provinces to refine our approaches. We remain confident that the regulations, protocols and plans we have put in place for these and the nationwide October elections will create an environment for free and fair elections.
The revised COVID-19 regulations at the moment enable [Time expired.] Thank you very much.
Please support the vote. Thank you.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: Chair, there is a member that is having his
microphone on and he’s disturbing us in the meeting.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): We kindly request that member to please mute.
Ms A F MUTHAMBI: Chairperson, let me take this opportunity to greet our Minister and the Deputy Minister Bapela, including the chairpersons of the various institutions that report to various portfolio. I want to greet the Chairperson of the Demarcation Board, CLR Commission, fellow commissioners and the chief executive officer also the Chairperson of SA Local Government Association, Salga, including the two Director- Generals of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs.
Chairperson, during our struggle years against apartheid, we understood very well that with freedom comes responsibility, with democracy comes accountability to our people. To this end, from 14 to 28 April 2021, the Portfolio Committee on Co- operative Governance and Traditional Affairs met and
considered the 2021-22 Annual Performance Plan Strategic Plans and budget of the department and the audits reporting to it.
This consist of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, the Municipality Infrastructure Support Agent, the CLR right Commission, the Municipality Demarcation Board and the SA Local Municipality Association. The resolved democratic government with the ANC as a governing party is to defeat the triple challenges of unemployment, inequality and poverty. The people’s priorities are our priority therefore the priorities of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs for the period under review resonate with many of the key issues that the preoccupied the committees legislative, public priority, public participation and municipality grant expenditure.
The implementation of section 139 of the Constitution, municipal financial viability, the functionality of municipal public accounts and disaster hazards, however, Chairperson and hon members, the battles sound differences of the development which will champion as the ruling party never comes without a measure of unrest. In this regard, they remain a significant gap in terms of the department’s support to district
municipalities as to enable them to appreciate nd understand their roles in respect of municipal health service.
The need for this became more evident last week where the committee undertook a week long oversight visit to the province of the North West
Not a single one of the four districts in the province were able to responds satisfactory to the question posed in relation to their municipal health services function and none of them had entered into service level agreement with the local municipality including the Department of Health in this regard. The department must attend to this as a matter of urgency, especially this time when there is health risk.
Our victory are the people’s which we as the portfolio committee of this Parliament are the custodians of. Therefore, we want to welcome, House Chairperson, the commitment of the municipal with the 44 districts municipality is to reduce infrastructures of backlogs and improve performance in the Municipal Infrastructure Grant. We have a series of engagement with a number of districts and local municipalities and the question of support by Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent,
Misa, has come up repeatedly. A matter concern has been around the capacity constraints at Misa, including shortage of personnel which has seen instances where there are only four engineers available to supply the whole province.
The department must also give this urgent attention to the matter and follow up in its preliminary pronouncement to the capacitating of the Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent
As we conduct oversight on behalf of our people particularly the women, the poor and the marginalised, we do justice by highlighting various concerns
Our matter concern with the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs is around the communities’ work programme. On numerous occasion the committees have requested specific information to help us understand better the challenges facing the programme and provide the necessary oversight. We therefore employ and appeal to the department to try to work with us in this regard.
Hon members, Chapter 12 of our beloved Constitution epitomises dignity for traditional systems which will embrace as a facet
asset of our modern democracy and an important vehicle of social reconstruction.
We know the priorities of the Department of Traditional Affairs for the period under review, including the extensive emphasis on the role of the institution of traditional leadership in cabbing the spread of Covid-19 pandemic.
Gender-based violence femicide, violence against the LGBV plus and community and promoting gender representation and women empowerment within the structures of traditional leadership.
On the recent oversight with the North West this portfolio committee has fond that there is still much to be done to support the institution of traditional leadership as it enables it to have a meaningful role in government operations.
The other issue that is of political importance, hon members, none of the 22 municipalities which we visited in the province of the North West were not aware of the coming into effect of the traditional and Khoisan leadership view which became a 2019 and simplification of the municipality operation, including the standing orders of councils. This policy has insufficient public and training to members of the traditional
affairs as well as adequate preparation for the implementation of the Act.
The Department of Traditional Affairs must therefore rectify this as a matter of urgency as recommended in the committee’s oversight board. This helps, hon members, simply past the Customary Initiation Bill, which aims to address the scourge of fatalities and injuries resulting from the corruption of male cultural initiation customs in certain parts of the country.
We are very sad to know that certain initiates yet again lost their lives over the December initiation season in the Eastern Cape. The department must therefore follow up on its resolution to issuing that those who insisted on the resumption of initiation in the province take responsibility for this.
In this year of Charlotte Macheke, we salute all leaders and full soldiers that fought for our freedom over many decades which culminated into our victorious and well class Constitution
Amongst most of its highlights it guarantees cultural religious and linguistic rights. We know therefore the challenges impeding the CLR Right Commission from fulfilling its mandate as indicated in its performance plan. These are not new challenges that raised in previous Annual Performance Plan as far as back in the last administration.
The issue of inadequate funding in particular underpins most of the difficulties facing the commission. We have therefore committed ourselves using every opportunity to advocate for increase funding to the commission as to reduce the mismanagement between social cohesion mandate visavi the financial at its disposal.
At the same time, we urge the commission to address that are within its sphere of control such as developing and clearing resource mobilisation strategy and preventing irregular expenditure.
As we recognise the injustice of the past and honoured those who suffered for justice and freedom in our land, we also recognise the need to manage municipal boundaries.
The Municipal Demarcation Board has demonstrated its commitment towards ensuring that the demarcation of municipal boundaries result in creation of sustainable municipalities that can fulfil their constitutional obligation. However, there is still much to be done to make this commitment a reality.
During our recent engagement with most of the municipalities that has been a subject of demarcation during 2016 local government electoral cycle, the predominant view was that the demarcation process has taken to worse rather than improve municipal financial viability. Consequently, the board has presented with demands of the reversal of these demarcation.
We call upon the executive authority to accelerate the process of amending the demarcation Act in order to deal decisively with this challenges.
Finally, we note the critical gaps in the environment that prevent the SA Local Government Association in minimising the impact of the support provided to municipalities particularly the support provided to the municipalities with the lack of legal provision for extending the Salga to the report
contemplated in section 106 of the Municipal Act section 71 of the Municipal Finance Management Act. This is a very serious shortcoming as we have witness and lack of appetite for the implementation of section 106 recommendation by municipality as well as poor utilisation of municipality as well as poor utilisation of section 71 reports any its early warning mechanism.
In conclusion hon members, I wish to thank the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, the commission, the Demarcation Board, Misa and Salga for the cordial constructive engagement. This contribution has made and we are working very easier and then I also want to thanks the commission as well as the community and support staff. We wish for their support. The community therefore support Budget Vote 3 and 15. Thank you, Chair.
Mr C BRINK: Chairperson, recently the two words step aside have gained new political meaning in South Africa. Step aside says the Kgetlengriver Residents’ Association to their local municipality in the North West, says Astral Foods to Lekwa Local Municipality in Mpumalanga, says municipalities run by the Democratic Alliance in the Western Cape to Eskom. Step
aside, so we can relieve the ANC and the responsibility of government, and ensure that water is clean, money is well spent, the benefits of the poor, and that loadshedding does not destroy businesses and jobs. Step aside, because enough time and money in human potential have been wasted by factionalism, tribalism and greed.
Following the leadership of the country, bottom up, President Cyril Ramaphosa is now telling some of his own comrades to step aside. And when the President implores people to vote against corrupt leaders, we can only wonder which party the President will be left to canvass for in October’s local government election. Step aside is also the message implicit in the latest Municipal Financial Sustainability Index produced by Ratings Africa. They say that troubled municipalities need a R51 billion bailout from national government to survive a liquidity crisis. The Minister, her department responsible for supporting municipalities, did not make mention of this, today.
The DA has fought against money being diverted from basic services to bail out SAA and other zombie state-owned entities. But this does not mean that municipalities should
now be bailed out. If a municipality is run by the mayor and municipal manager, who are corrupt or incompetent, giving that municipality more money will only increase its output of irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure. To prevent the financial and institutional collapse of municipalities, we need to dig deeper.
We need to go back to the beginning of democratic local government. To quote Aristotle, “The mistake lies in the beginning ... well begun is half done - so an error at the beginning through quite small, as the proportion of a half of the whole matter.” So as to the question: What were the errors at the beginning of democratic local government? Here are the answers: Mistake number one - cadre deployment an ANC policy adopted in Mafikeng in 1997, for the stated purpose of subsuming the state under the party. The politicians want to advance their party political agenda, they stand for Parliament, or provincial legislature, or the local council.
People should not be appointed based on a political loyalty as municipal managers, CFOs, chief engineers and city planners.
These jobs require a nonpolitical skill and attitudes. The ban on political municipal officials holding political office in a party, a provision of the Municipal Systems Amendment Act
passed late last year, is a step in the right direction. But the shameless defence by President Ramaphosa, of this unconstitutional practice at the Zondo Commission is a cause for serious concern.
Mistake number two - race-based employment equity plans, requirements of the Employment Equity Act in 2001. It does not matter whether you apply regional or national racial targets in appointing and promoting municipal officials, the effect is to narrow the pool of skills and expertise available in local government. Take municipalities in the North West and the Free State, for example our struggle to promote engineers and financial managers who happen to be of Indian descent into top management positions without flunking their own race-based employment equity plans. This is because South Africans of Indian descent, according to the demeaning rule of racial demographic representivity, make up less than five per cent of the economically active population in those provinces. And yet, I can wait to the people living in a bankrupt, broken municipality could not care less about the race of their local municipal officials, only that those officials are competent.
Under mistake number three - black economic empowerment, BEE and preferential procurement, a combination of cadre deployment and race quotas in the spending of government money. These policies do not empower ordinary people. They further enable State Capture, elite enrichment, and the breakdown of services and infrastructure. These policies also prevent municipalities from compensating for the internal weaknesses, making it near impossible for them to procure value for taxpayer’s money, locking them into a loop of failure. It is time for change, at the ballot box, but also here in Parliament. While voters can this year tell ANC councillors and mayors to step aside, it is also time for the country to sidestep failed ANC policies. I thank you.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: Chair, the EFF rejects Cogta proposed austerity budget. Chairperson section 152 of the Constitution mandates the local sphere of government to, amongst others, provide democratic and accountable local government to communities, ensure that services are provided to communities, in particular the poorest of the poor. This debate of the Annual Performance Plan, and budget votes of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs for the year, ending 31 March 2021, is taking place right after the
oversight of the portfolio committee of Cogta in North West. Chairperson, we are all left traumatised by the state of all municipalities. It was a complete disaster. We all agree that there are no municipalities left there. The first problem is corruption that is engulfing the province.
Just recently, the mayor of J B Marks Local Municipality who just resigned is adding to a long list of mayors, municipal managers and other officials who have resigned or fired on the account of corruption. Matlosana Local Municipality is just one typical example of many decaying municipalities across the country. Matlosana council does not sit because they are afraid of thugs. We have taken over the municipality, like in Ethekwini, where the Auditor-General, AG, was once prevented to do the auditing through guns, and the chief executive officer of this municipality attacked in his house, at some point to stop him from investigating corruption that is still taking place in this municipality of Ethekwini.
Matlosana Local Municipality and many other municipalities owe Eskom millions of rand and owe water boards, even more millions. The money is spent on electricity and water, but is never paid to Eskom all support while our people do not have
water and electricity. Money is just being looted left and right. You begin to ask yourself if the council cannot meet to take decisions, Chairperson, how do they perform their work as public representatives to service communities. I mean the North West as a province is under administration and the people are suffering due to corruption and because people do not have electricity infrastructure is collapsing. There are no roads, there is no water. People are just suffering. This is not the case in the North West alone, but is common across all provinces. In some of the municipalities there in North West is madness. It is totally madness. We were told that in Ratlou, Tswaing and Ditsobotla Municipalities, have two mayors. We simply do not have capable leaders. The ruling party has lost control of all of this. The Chairperson in the Portfolio Committee of Cogta asking mayors during the oversight and municipal managers during the oversight, if they have read the Municipal Systems Act and all of them, all of them ...
... ngaphandle kwamahloni ...
... all of them, they are not even ashamed, to admit that they have not read it. But these are the people entrusted with the responsibilities of leading the municipalities. The AG pointed out to a large sum of money there are used on Consultants in all municipalities across the country. But still, the financial systems of municipalities are far from improvements. At one point we were told that in North West people are buying certificates to become CFOs. They are buying these certificates from the province of Eastern Cape and is well known in the Northern Cape, but there is nothing that is being done in order to bring thugs to book. Wasteful expenditure, irregular expenditure, unauthorised and fruitless expenditure accounts for billions. These municipalities are ensuring that MPAC and disciplinary boards are permanently dysfunctional to write off these billions through a council resolution at the end.
At the end, no one will be held accountable for this plan looting. A case in point is the Chair of MPAC of uMbhashe Local Municipality, during our portfolio committee meeting she could not explain how the MPAC decides written off unauthorised, irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure, UIFW. It was a disgrace. Collapsed local government must be
blamed squarely for the failure of the ruling party. There is no political will to remove and replace the corrupt ANC deployees’. Since we arrived here in Parliament as the EFF in 2014, we have outlined a clear, cogent and a practical way out of this mess we find ourselves in.
We started the clear call for revision of the Division of Revenue Bill to solve this systemic budget allocation issues to ensure that we deal with unfunded mandates of basic service delivery in local government and solve apartheid spatial planning. We said you cannot solve local governments spatial challenges without resolving the land question. Municipalities need land to build infrastructure, to build water pipes, to build sanitation and sewer pipes, to build recreational facilities. But also, we need to resolve the land question so that we repurpose local government into the sphere of economic activities. Each and every municipality must be an economic hub on its own to create jobs, employ people and people will in future be able to pay for their services. We must appoint only qualified people to work in municipalities, engineers, artisans, town planners, geographers and other skilled professions, and do away with outsourcing of basic services.
I think is disingenuous for the Minister to come here and announced a new programme that is a joint programme of the Department of Agriculture. We just have to ask the Minister as to what happened to community work programme that we always demand answers from the department. And still to date, we have not got satisfactory answers about the community work programme. That is an initiative of the department. This costs millions of taxpayers, and the department is failing to account.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Thank you, hon Mkhalipi.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: But, Chairperson, I have seven minutes. I have only spoken for six minutes.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Oh! Okay.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: So let alone programme is used by the ANC to isolate the needy community members who qualify for it. The Minister is not prioritising this issue, let alone that the members of the portfolio committee, have been raising this issue now and again, since we are demanding to know what
happens with this programme that is supposed to go and help people on the ground. The Minister cannot come here and then announce on the new programme in total. We need the Minister to account for this programme first, before she comes here and announce on a new initiative by the department. We reject this budget, Chairperson. Thank you.
Ms L L VAN DER MERWE: Chairperson, may I intervene. I am sorry, is hon Van der Merwe from the IFP.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Yes, hon member.
Ms L L VAN DER MERWE: Chairperson, please may we proceed to the next speaker, our speaker got locked out due to connection issues, so if we could just come back later. I am sorry about that, Chairperson.
Mr I M GROENEWALD: Hon Chairperson, if we look at local government, the correct recipe should be a balance of community needs versus that of the available resources to ultimately serve residents in the same order. The Constitution states that all functions of a municipality ... how it should
spend its resources, protect the environment and its obligations towards the residents.
Die realiteit is egter dat plaaslike regering totaal misluk. Munisipaliteite is bankrot, skuld hul krediteure miljarde en basiese dienste soos water voorsiening en vullisverwydering vind nie plaas nie terwyl munisipaliteite verantwoordelik vir die besoedeling van skaars waterbronne is. Die rede vir hierdie mislukking is nie ’n tekort aan fondse nie en dit is ook nie apartheid nie.
The reason for incomplete infrastructure projects is not insufficient funds. It is rather the mismanagement of funds and corruption. One example is the eight megalitre sewerage plant that is being constructed in Naledi Municipality in the North West. The plant’s construction has already cost an exorbitant R120 million but there is further funding needed to complete the project. This new plant has thus been standing dormant for the last 18 months due to the inflated cost of the plant and poor planning.
Municipalities should prioritise infrastructure that already exists and not only new capital projects. Municipalities should be the custodians of infrastructure and assets on behalf of the communities they serve. There is a lack of routine maintenance and municipalities fail to safeguard infrastructure from vandalism, theft and destruction. In Matlosana, sports stadiums have been robbed of all copper cables and buildings burnt to such an extent that these facilities cannot be used.
Gemeenskapsale word geplunder en stuk vir stuk weggedra. Waterpype en kleppe word gesteel, wat tot waterlekke en ’n vermorsing van honderde duisende liter water lei. Munisipale werkers word deur bendes geïntimideer en daar word selfs munisipale amptenare vermoor ... [Onhoorbaar.] ... as gevolg van ANC faksiegevegte; faksiegevegte terwyl betalende inwoners geen dienste ontvang nie; faksiegevegte terwyl die armstes van die armes daaronder ly, want vir 27 jaar het die regering eerder gesteel as om dienste aan hierdie gemeenskappe te lewer en omstandighede te verbeter.
The infighting is about who and which faction remains in power or can get power in order for them to help themselves and their cadres to taxpayers’ hard-earned money and deprive the poorest of the poor from basic services.
Local government is currently in crisis management mode. There is inaction when the crisis has already happened. There are many looming crises — sinkholes which are left to get bigger, sewage leakages which are left to pump millions of litres of sewerage into water sources, landfill sites which do not comply with the relevant legislation prescripts and refuse which is not regularly removed creating serious health risks for residents, animals and the environment.
The noncompliance to laws and regulations leaves local government unaccountable to people, and nontransparent. For years ... has been a complete lack of consequence management. There are no consequences for officials who transgress or mismanage. It seems as though the ANC government or municipalities regard the Constitution and legislation as toilet paper.
Daar is goeie wetgewing ... munisipale ... finansiële en algemene bestuur bepaal. Daar is egter bitter min voldoening hieraan. Selfs munisipaliteite se eie bywette word deur munisipale administrasies geignoreer. Waarvoor gebruik die ANC
... [Onhoorbaar.] ... hierdie wetgewing? Toiletpapier.
An accountable local government is where officials are appointed based on merit, where the qualified person is appointed and where service contractors are also appointed based on whether they will be able to provide the service and their cost effectiveness.
Stop affirmative action appointments, cadre deployment and black economic empowerment, BEE. These policies are a breeding ground for corruption and ineffective local government which does not deliver basic services. The majority of municipalities have recently tabled proposed increases of 20% in electricity tariffs. This is unsustainable and will result in even more job losses and failed businesses.
In these dire circumstances, an environment should be created to sustain private enterprises by rates and tax relief rather
than increases. If corruption and inflated prices of procurement stops, this would be possible. Increases in tariffs while services are not delivered ... people are expected to pay more for something they do not receive. If drastic changes do not occur, the future looks bleak.
The Constitutional Court ruling in the case of Rademan v Moqhaka Local Municipality should be noted. No money is due and payable to a municipality for services not rendered.
Municipalities are too big. We need smaller municipal units where service delivery is nearer to the people.
Hon Minister, you are lying to South Africa. The government is not a caring government. It’s a government ...
... in chaos. Die enigste oplossing vir die mislukking van munisipaliteite is op 27 Oktober. Kiesers moet opstaan, saamstaan en sterk staan om van die onbevoegde ANC regering ontslae te raak. Dankie.
The MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS: I’m not lying.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon Groenewald, I would really advise you that one should always refrain from using language that is offensive, in saying that another member is lying. It is unparliamentary. It is unparliamentary hon Groenewald and it should have been withdrawn.
Mr I M GROENEWALD: Chairperson, if the Minister can show me a
municipality that’s actually working then I will withdraw.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon member, can you please withdraw that and please do it unconditionally? I would really appreciate it so that we can continue with our debate.
Mr I M GROENEWALD: Sorry, Chairperson, but I will not withdraw
because it’s the truth.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon member, you are out of order.
Mr A H M PAPO: Point of order!
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Okay, who’s raising
a point of order?
Mr A H M PAPO: It’s member Papo. The member is defying the ruling of a presiding officer ... violating the Rules on unparliamentary language. Presiding officer, I think you have to make a decision on such a member remaining in the meeting for defying your ruling.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Thank you, hon Papo. I was just about to make hon Groenewald aware that what he is doing is unacceptable, and I would therefore request him to be withdrawn from this platform unless he changes his mind and withdraws. Hon Groenewald, I’m giving you another chance.
Mr I M GROENEWALD: [Inaudible.]
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Pardon me?
Mr I M GROENEWALD: I will not withdraw, Chairperson. It is the truth.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Thank you very much hon Groenewald. We request IT to remove hon Groenewald from the platform.
I am sure IT has taken care of that. We now move to the Deputy Minister. The hon Deputy Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs ... [Inaudible.]
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS (Mr K O Bapela): Hon House Chairperson, Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Dr Nkosazana
Dlamini-Zuma, the hon chairperson and members of the portfolio committee, hon Members of Parliament and the Deputy Ministers that have joined us, Chairperson of the National House of Traditional and Khoisan Leaders, Inkosi Mahlangu, the Chairperson of the Commission of the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities, Prof Mosoma, members of the provincial and executive community Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Cogta and Co-operative Governance, Human Settlement and Traditional Affairs, Coghsta, chairperson of the municipal demarcation board and its members, President of the SA Local Government Association, director generals of the Department of
Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, DCOG and the Department of Traditional Affairs, DTA, Ms Avril Williamson and Mr Mashwahle Diphofa, chief executive officer, CEO, of Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent, Misa, and head of the Disaster Management Centre, ladies and gentlemen, yesterday 12 May we celebrated the International Nurses Day under the theme, “Hashtag we answer the call.” The theme serves in grate honour of uMama Charlotte Manye Maxeke, a selfless first female black graduate. She obtained her Bachelor of Science, BSc degree from Wilberforce University of Ohio in 1903 at the time when African women were treated as fourth class noncitizens on an account of the triple oppression of race, class and in gender.
This year we celebrate the life and times of Charlotte Manye Maxeke, our struggle stalwart who is a giant and a trailblazer in her own right.
I present Budget Vote 3 and 15 under the backdrop of hard hitting economic challenges amid the worldwide pandemic of the coronavirus COVID-19 as we know it. As country we have mourned the passing of nearly 54 900 of our fellow South Africans as the result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The told and the untold damage caused by COVID-19 has left deep scars in our pained society. Many have lost loved ones, income, jobs, livelihoods and businesses. However, because we are a resilient nation in possession of a fighting spirit we dare not lose hope.
To call the words of the Nobel Laureate Arch Bishop Desmond Tutu who reminded us that and I quote, “Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all the darkness.” A guiding and caring light during this trying times have been the brave and fearless frontline workers whom we express our deep gratitude for the important work they continue to undertake.
Hon members, we also salute local government essential service workers who remain steadfast at the frontline of our fight against COVID-19. Thanks to the everyday efforts of these workers. We have lights, clean water, refuse has been collected and most streets are clean. We are cognisant to the fact that the economic challenges had a grate negative effect on local government. Consequently, we are working together for the economic recovery and renewal plan to take route in the municipality so that our people can get jobs and with that,
our communities will be able to pay for their municipal services and thus improve on the local government revenue.
During the 2015 Budget Vote, we committed to the finalisation of the Traditional and Khoisan Leadership Governance Bill to give effect to the effective milestone in the history of our democracy which is the recognition and affirmation of the Khoisan leadership structures and communities.
The year 2021 is of a particular important to traditional and especially Khoisan communities and their leaders. The long awaited Traditional and Khoisan Leadership Act of 2019 commenced ...
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon Minister. We have lost the Deputy Minister. The hon Bapela.
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS (Mr K O Bapela): Yes, I am still here. Can you see? Can you hear me?
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Yes, I can hear you.
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS (Mr K O Bapela): Chair, am I not locked out? I am still on. Am I audible?
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Yes, you are. Go ahead hon Deputy Minister.
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS (Mr K O Bapela): My apologies on the unstable network.
The recognition of the Khoisan means they will have their identity similar to the other indigenous groups in South Africa. They will also promote and protect their own customs, traditions and cultures. They will establish their own communities and claim land that belongs to them for such establishments.
Also they will develop their own language until it is used for learning purposes. They can also print their own literature such as the Bible, dictionary and later textbooks when it is ready thought in schools including the national radio stations that needs also to be established.
We have started with provincial roadshows as part of the consultations on the new legislation. The aim of these engagements is to discus with the Khoisan communities on the process to be undertaken to facilitated the recognition of the Khoi and San communities as per the provision of the Traditional and Khoisan Leadership, TKL. We have to also close gaps in the current legislation and will strengthen the developmental role that the institution plays traditional communities.
We also note and welcome the new programme instituted by the National Traditional and Khoisan leaders called the Developmental Monarchs. It comes at the time when the TKL itself emphasises on a new model of encouraging partnerships for developments which will benefit their communities. For an example the mining activities, forestry, fishing, cultural heritage and golden economic activities all of them would have to take a new way of partnerships that have benefits largely their communities.
Hon members, in March this year Cabinet reaffirmed the resolution of the 2017 Traditional and Khoisan Leaders Indaba on Land Administration, Land Tenure Reform in communal areas
which was the fundamental demand for land to be transferred to communities under the custodian of the traditional leaders.
Cabinet further resolved that the process of consultation on the land consultation must and would be led by the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development as the custodian of land held in trust on behalf of the communities needs to be embarked upon so that we could the conclude on the consultation that would culminate on the Land Indaba during the month of September 2021.
Traditional leaders continue to play an active role in the implementation of the agrarian revolution programme in addressing food security and unemployment. Thus improving livelihoods of our rural communities. In the previous financial year, the department embarked on a process of remodelling the agrarian revolution programme. As such the department has signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, with the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development. This approach should be beneficial since it requires an integrated and collaborative approach which will find expression through the district development model and ensure alignment with agriculture and agro processing masterplan.
When Nelson Mandela predicted the economy and developmental role played by the rural communities when he said and I quote:
What is often overlooked is the immense untapped potential of rural communities to take the lead in shaping a better future for themselves.
In February this year, the Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini–Zuma together with Inkosi Mahlangu the Chairperson of the National House of Traditional and Khoisan Leaders launched the Invest Rural Masterplan. This initiative refocuses society’s attention on rural areas to tackle the rural challenges and turn the situation into the investible opportunity that works with the rural people and ensure the full participation in the economy.
Hon members, as we approach the winter initiation season, depending on whether the third wave hits us as a country, and also dependent on COVID-19 regulations our concern is now focused on us saving and protecting the lives of the young people if this season is going to be continued with for them to take pride in practising their own cultural culture.
Our objectives as government is zero death as one death is too many. The cultural practice of initiation is our pride as Africans and government has the responsibility to protect the lives of the young people who are certain to enter into that stage of graduating from being boys to adults.
We wish to express our appreciation to the portfolio committee and the Select Committee of the Co-operative Governance and Traditional affairs and Parliament for their tireless work to prioritise the process of the passing of the Customary Initiation Bill. The Bill which is wait for the President to sign it into law. Its aim is to provide for the effective regulation of customary initiation practice or provide for the establishment of the national initiation oversite committee and provincial initiation co-ordinating committees and their functions.
Again the provisions of the law and other aspects for punishing the wrongdoing by people who kidnap, injure or run illegal schools with minimum and maximum sentences that will be imposed on the perpetrators. We hope that it will clean up the wrongdoing within the pride of our culture.
We also want to commend the work of the Cultural, Religious and Linguistic, CLR, Rights Commission having gone through the hearings which they conducted in 2021 with the wrongdoings that are happening in the churches who take advantage of the people believe systems who make people to perform things that are shameful to the religion such as eating grass, drinking petrol, sprayed with doom and many, many others.
We hope that the recommendations that are contained in the report will be considered by Parliament and we need to start engaging with the religious leadership on harmful religious practices.
Lastly, to check on the process of engaging on aspects that undermine the cultures, such as the incident that happened at Boulders Shopping Centre. We want to commend the CRL Rights Commission for doing that and keep up the good work.
The commission together with the national house must have engagements and also with the religion that will culminate on the promotion of our cultural practices, religious freedom and dealing with those cultural and harmful religious practices that needs to be discontinued in society.
Hon members, local government is the heart of the lives of the people of South Africa. It is where we get the water we drink, electricity we use, the roads that we drive on, the parks which our children play on and is about building healthy living communities.
A narrative that is a long story by John Lennon on what he said could be the ideal community and a municipality and I quote:
You may say I am a dreamer, but I am not the only one. Together we can bring this city and surrounding areas closer to our ideal vision. But in order to build a place that better suits the needs of everybody, we need every body’s voice and everybody’s help. So, stand up.
The department has set clear indicators that set to address the problems at municipalities that include to improve the poor governance and accountability with functional management high vacancies in critical senior management positions, high infrastructure backlog and in some instances inability to deliver even a chore of basic municipal services efficiently and effectively.
Myself and the Deputy Minister of Finance are on the roadshows to provinces engaging with the premiers and members of the executives to really begin to look at the support that is given to the municipalities using section 154 so that we do not have to wait until the municipality is in serious deep crisis. If this exercise is coming okay that we are able to fund each other so that we support municipalities maximally as the Constitution obligates on us.
Secondly, it is for us to introduce the provisions of the intergovernmental monitoring support intervention called the Municipal Corporation Bill. Once concluded, by the Cabinet it will then be presented to Parliament for tabling and considerations and we hope this will happen within this financial year.
The District Development Model already is in function and then we are therefore engaging with all the role-players the state- owned entities and the traditional leadership as important stakeholders to ensure therefore that planning development of communities are part of it. When we talk about one budget one plan they are also part of it.
In conclusion, the Ministry is committed in restoring the dignity and the institution of traditional leadership and local government. I would like to thank my family, my staff in the office the Department of Co-operative Governances for its continued support that we can execute the manifesto of the governing party. We support the Budget Vote 15 of Department of Traditional Affairs which has consistently in the past five years has been receiving clean audit. The Budget is minimal and it cannot fulfil some of the objectives and mandates and as expected to do the service to the traditional communities. The support for Budget Vote 3 which has improved in its findings its critical to ensure the grade strides that the department has played in serving the people of South Africa with pride and dignity as well as building block for a resilient safe sustainable, prosperous and growing communities. As the words of Nelson Mandela and I quote, “It always seems impossible until is done.” I Thank you, Chairperson. I was able to finish my speech.
Mr M N XUMALO: Hon House Chair. It is hon Nxumalo here.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): The hon Nxumalo.
Mr M N NXUMALO: Yes, hon Chair, can I debate on behalf of THE hon Princes Angela? I was locked when you called my name for the IFP.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): I would like to take advice about that from the table hon Nxumalo. Just stay on the platform. I will take advice with that.
Mr M N NXUMALO: Thanks, Chair.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Alright, I wanted to say hon Deputy Minister, Mr Bapela, I had to tread very carefully in making sure that you use all your available time for your speech. I mean with the name K O Bapela, who would not be cautious.
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF CO-OPRRATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS (Mr K O Bapela): Definitely, Chair I agree with you.
Mr W M THRING: Thank you, hon House Chair. The ACDP recognises the right of any sovereign nation including Israel, to protect itself from unprovoked attacks. Chair, no nation when it comes under enemy fire of thousands of rockets, can sit by and leave
its innocent citizens defenceless. We call on the South African government in this case, to play a peace broking role, a diplomatic role of working towards a two state solution for the Israelis and Palestinians. That said, the ACDP is aware that the budget for the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs in respect of 2021-22 financial year, reduces by almost 10% when we consider Budget Vote Three and 15, from R106,9 billion in 2020-21 to R108 billion in 2021-22. Clearly this reduction of some R6,1 billion under these trying economic times impacts further on service delivery or the lack thereof. The ACDP is cognisant of the concerns ... [Interjections.]
Mr M N PAULSEN: Point of order Chair!
Mr W M THRING: ... and issues raised by the committee and reflected in the annual performance plan, APP of the department. [Interjections.]
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): What is your point of order hon member?
Mr W M THRING: These include ... [Interjections.]
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon Thring, can I, take a point of order?
Mr W M THRING: Yes, Chair!
Mr M N PAULSEN: Chairperson, this is the debate on cooperative governance and traditional affairs. What is that got to do with international relations? The speaker lobbying for support for apartheid Israel. [Interjections]
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon member! Hon member!
Mr M N PAULSEN: What is the relevance, Chair?
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon member, that
has got nothing to do with you because it’s not your call.
Mr W M THRING: thank you for the defence Chair,
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): [Inaudible] ...you are disturbing the hon member, please.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: But he was reading ... [Inaudible.] We are debating Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs here, not Israel, not those things of Zionist Israel.
Mr W M THRING: The Minister raised the debate when she opened it.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon members please, I do not think that members of the EFF are monitors of this debate. Leave these members to complete their speeches, it is not your call, please. Let us not disturb each other unnecessary. You got your time, nobody disturbed when you put forth your debate. Hon Thring, could you please continue!
Mr W M THRING: Thank you Chair. The ACDP is cognisant of the concerns and issues raised by the committee, and reflecting the APP of the department. These include the District Development Model concerned about it, the Municipal Infrastructure Grant Expenditure, the implementation of
...[Inaudible] ...of section 139 of the Constitution, the Municipal Financial Viability, the functionality of Public Accounts Committee and disaster hazards. There can be no doubt that a Monitoring and Intervention Bill to give effect to
section 139 of the Constitution is much needed. One wonders why this Bill, which has been on the department’s APP since the Fourth Administration, has not been fast tracked. Surely if one acknowledges the report of the Auditor-General on the dismal performance of the majority of our municipalities, then a Monitoring and Intervention Bill based on the principles of good governance, is sorely needed,
Hon House Chair, it is said that everything rises or falls with leadership. In this regard, the ACDP believes that the Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent, Misa has contributed to the fall of many municipalities across the country. An example of this follows the engagement with the Lejweleputswa district, which revealed that there were only four Misa engineers for the entire Free State. This begs the question, how is Misa going to support the envisaged 44 districts to reduce infrastructure backlogs and improve performance in respect of their Municipal Infrastructure. Grant programmes.
Now Chair, sub-programme seven on municipal governance in programme three of the departments 2021-22 budget, sees an increase of over 5 000%. Hon Chair, good governance refers to structures and processes that are designed to ensure
accountability, transparency, responsiveness, rule of law, stability, equity and inclusiveness, empowerment and broad- based participation. A failure to employ these fundamental principles will see a 5 000% loss in municipal governance and throwing good money off the bad. The type of leaders needed in local government are able, trustworthy, God-fearing men and women who hate dishonest gain. The ACDP has such leaders. I thank you Chair.
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon members, the hon Buthelezi from the IFP could not come in, not because of his making. I will therefore accommodate him at slot number 12 where there is AIC, if the AIC is not available or we will take the next one, hon Nxumalo. The next speaker on the platform is from the ATM, the hon Marawu.
Ms T L MARAWU: Thank you very much Chair. The late Mr Kimi Makwetu, in his latest Local Government Audit Report late in 2020, paints an undesirable picture of billions of funds allocated municipalities, being managed in a vary that are contrary to the prescripts and recognise accounting principles. He strongly cautioned that, these administrative and governance lapses make for a very weak accountability and
the consequence exposure to abuse of the public purse. The overall theme of his report was quite damning. He said, I quote:
The safe and clean hands that can be relied upon to look after the public purse in local governments are few.
Due to time constraints Chair, I will single only three provinces to illustrate that, we desperately need the forthcoming local government elections to remove the corrupt and incompetent ANC-led municipalities. I will start with the Eastern Cape. The Auditor-General’s, AG report tells the story of a widespread lack of financial controls and project monitoring, as an ongoing culture of a lack of accountability, as well as tolerance of transgression which resulted in a further regression in audit outcomes. In the province improvements were rare and the general trends over the past three years remained negative.
Eight municipalities were unable to adequately support the information reported in their financial statements and referred disclaimed opinions. The report included irregular expenditure of R2,5 billion incurred during the year under
review, and further R4,2 billion was flagged for audits finalised subsequent to the cut-off date for this report. The province spent a total of R118 million in consulting costs for financial reporting. This R2 million was spent by municipalities whose audits had not been finalised by the cut- off date of the report. The only problem we are saying is that, consultants are appointed but there are no skills that are transferred to the officials of the municipalities. So, they continue appointing consultants whereas that money is supposed to go to the service delivery.
The Free State has experienced R1.4 billion for irregular expenditure, R46 million on consultants, and even in the Free State the same problems, that of nontransferring of skills by consultants to the officials of municipalities. In the Gauteng Province, R1,7 billion of irregular expenditure, a further R3,3 billion was reported for audit finalised subsequent to the cut-off date for this report, with the City of Tshwane Metropolitan account for R2,9 billion and Emfuleni account for R358 million.
What we are saying as ATM is that, we are calling for an urgent intervention by the Minister that heads must roll hon
Minister. We are tired of listening to the platitudes and hollow promises. [Time Expired]
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Thank you hon member. Your time is up hon Marawu. Thank you very much. I wonder whether the hon Lesoma is ready.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M LESOMA): Yes, hon house
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Okay, we were about to call the hon Mpumza. Thank you very much.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M LESOMA): Thank you hon
Ntombela. I now recognise hon Mpumza. Over to you sir. Hon Mpumza!
Mr G G MPUMZA: Thank you Chair, am I audible.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M LESOMA): You are audible
Mr G G MPUMZA: Hon House Chair, hon Minister, Deputy Minister hon members and the heads of the agencies of the department. Chair, I rise on behalf of the ANC to welcome the Budget Vote Three, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, which supports the critical aspects of economic reconstruction and recovery of the country. Hon Chair, The ANC has long recognised that job creation and decent work, is central to reduction of poverty inequality and unemployment. As the President has indicated on numerous occasions, the rebuilding of South Africa from the ruins of COVID-19 must transform the structural fault lines of apartheid and colonialism.
The role of local government in driving economic development and transformation, is critical for setting South Africa on an inclusive growth trajectory. While the fiscal constraints are acknowledged, this budget creatively allocates funding to sectors of the economy that the stimulus grows. Therefore, strengthening intergovernmental alignment of national economic development programmes, with the local economic development plans of municipalities in the local space, will impact positively on job creation opportunities and economic growths. Chair, we know that the infrastructure is the largest spending programme on the economic development function in the budget,
and the capital expenditure programmes are protected from budget reduction, a clear ANC commitment to investing in infrastructure as a catalyst for economic growth.
Chair, we are saying that the regulatory force should also encourage investment to drive economic growth and job creation in the local space. In order to fund new bulk water projects and maintain raw water, the spending in the 2021 financial year is R28,6 billion to R30 billion in 2023-24. This is expected, it has grown. As a result, as part of our oversight, we must ensure that infrastructure projects are driven through localisation by using South African suppliers, material and South African companies, thereby empowering young people and women in cooperatives so that we are in a position to ensure social integration and social cohesion.
By purposely linking local economies with district and national economies, we massify, optimise and transform the structure of the economy. It is therefore imperative we strengthen the policy and the implementation of cooperative programmes for youth and women, in order to eradicate poverty and enhance once more, social cohesion.
Chair we are saying the land reform programme, when it is neatly tied to integrated regional spatial planning, as envisaged in the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act, Act 16 of 2013, shall go a long way to render urban and rural dwellers to live in sustainable human settlements, close to economic opportunities and social infrastructure. Therefore, the local sphere of government must create conducive conditions for the development of small, medium-sized enterprises and starter hubs to ensure that we build the economy within the context of the District Development Model, so that the district hubs become the supporters and facilitators of such economic activities in the local spheres.
We appreciate the input by hon Brink in relation to our policy of cadre development. We want to remind hon Brink that, the example of a well-run City of Cape Town is indeed well-run for some, but is run down for the people of Khayelitsha, the people of Philippi and the people of Clairefontaine where sewer spillages are running down the streets for months, six months down the line. That is indicative of a well-run city as an example by the DA. Chair, as the ANC we are unapologetic in our determination to use the budget with the levers of the state power, to drive a thorough going economic transformation
in line with the National Development Plan, NDP vision. We therefore, as the ANC portfolio committee, support the Budget Vote Three of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs. Thank you Chair.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M LESOMA): Thank you hon
Mpumza, you are on time. I now recognise the member from the AIC. AIC! It seems like the AIC is missing in action. I recognise the hon member from the IFP. Hon IFP member!
Mr M N NXUMALO: House Chairperson, thanks for the opportunity once again. The IFP ... [Inaudible.] ... concerned about the state of municipalities, across the country. Now, the level of mismanagement and irregular expenditure an ... [Inaudible.]
.... unacceptable high and it seems that this wave of corrupt conduct on the part of public officials is unabated. In light of the physical zone that local government has been passed ... is playing during the pandemic. The state of affairs is quiet concerning as citizens are left at the mercy of corrupt officials, to provides emergency water, increase sanitasation of public transport and facilities, food shelter for the homeless as well as basic community service.
Now, House Chair the IFP wishes to express its concern. Over the last three years the department has negative audit findings. The department tasked with handling billions of rands from the public purse, is even alarm, which we must be collectively be responsible. It is indicative of the culture of impunity when it comes to an unlawful conduct and the misappropriation of funds.
Further, the office of the Auditor-General had noted that despite these unfavourable audit outcome. Corrective action needs to address this serious qualification areas, particularly relating to accrual, same as an irregular expenditure, have not yet been implemented.
Now the IFP echoes, the ANC’s concerns regarding some projects spending almost all the budget, that have been very low performance. Disparities like these, speak to the heart of the poor governance and lead to the ...
[Inaudible.] ... between the public and our government.
We note with concern the reduction in the departments overall budget allocation. Now this reduction has implications for institutional development and the community work programme.
Further, the funding model for these municipalities infrastructure support agencies is worrying, as this will hamper Minister’s ability to execute mandate effectively. Now, the IFP, strongly suggests the re-evaluation of this model... [Inaudible.] ... operation.
The IFP recognises the integral role of the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, CoGTA in addressing numerous and critical need across the country especially in such unprecedented times. However, we remain concerned that the vehicle through which with large amounts of public finance ... [Inaudible.] ... become feed of serious individuals to line up their personal coffers. And because ... [Inaudible.] ... of funds ... to this COVID-19. There’s very little of the current financial predicament, can be assigned to the interaction of projects and to the diversion of funds by the pandemic.
Hon members, the IFP, once again demands to see more visible accountability and ... [Inaudible.] ... when it comes to officials who have been found guilty of having broken the law
– we simply cannot tolerate this lack of discipline in the financial management.
We need to ensure that proper checks and balances are in order, failure will be the expense of those who are most vulnerable in our society, those that are desperate reliance
... [Inaudible.] ... essential services will end up paying the ultimate price, it will not be the first time this time. The IFP supports this report. I thank you.
Mr C H M SIBISI: House Chair, the shocking state of South Africa’s municipalities was uncovered last year after the Auditor-General released its local government audit outcomes for the previous financial years. That report showed that there was a regression in the audit outcomes under the current local government administration, then in its third year.
The Auditor-General, AG, further showed us that over a three- year period the audit outcomes of 76 municipalities regressed, with only 31 improved. Now in the midst of COVID-19, we can only imagine by what extend are municipalities currently wait to see audit outcomes, and whether they will exceed their previous levels of fruitless expenditure.
The breakdown of irregular expenditure per province is, as follows Eastern Cape, R2,5 billion rand incurred during the
year under review. Free State, R1,4 billion for the year under review. Gauteng, R1,7 billion for municipalities,
KwaZulu-Natal, R6,5 billion for the period under review, with EThekwini Metro incurring R2,34 billion ...
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M M Lesoma): Hon Sibisi, we lost you.
Mr C H M SIBISI: ... of this amount. Limpopo, R1,5 billion for the year under review, Mpumalanga, R1,09 billion ... House Chair, House Chair, hon House Chair.
Nks H O MKHALIPHI: Qhubeka baba, siyakuzwa. Usihlalo akazwakali.
Mr C H M SIBISI: .... oh thanks mama. Bearing in mind the municipalities, irregular expenditure. The Minister in her budget speech last year told Parliament that COVID-19 did not spare the municipalities, because revenue collection was affected. So, too easily ... [Inaudible.] ... municipality received an allocation R20 billion. These are significant amounts of irregular expenditure and it will assist us to
attend to this matter, especially now that we are seemingly approaching a fiscal cliff.
The NFP, would like to appeal to the Minister and South African Local Government Association, SALGA, to look into the underperformance of municipalities in these seemingly failing economy. This country does not need dysfunctional municipalities. We note the budget, but appeal to the Minister to heed the call to address the underperformance of municipalities. We therefore support it. Thank you, House Chair.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M M Lesoma): Thank you, hon Sibisi, and I am not too sure whether hon Mkhaliphi was assisting or what. But you listen to her, but I think you should listen to me. Now, it brings me to recognise hon Hadebe from the ANC. Hon Bhungane.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: House Chair, I was assisting you because I saw that you are muted.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M M Lesoma): No, no, no
let’s leave it, let’s proceed hon members. Hon Hadebe, with an H.
Mr B M HADEBE: House Chair, and my apologies, my video is malfunctioning, all protocol observed. The main objectives of the liberation struggle were the total transfer of power from the apartheid racist regime to a democratic majority. The focus in this phase is to build an effective developmental state that is capable of transforming social and economic relations of power in society. The creation of a developmental state has been dampened by factors that include political and administrative interface.
Instability in administrative leadership and skills deficit, these weaknesses in capacity and performance are most serious in historically disadvantaged communities. Hon House Chair and hon Minister, we therefore welcome the R2,9 billion allocated to O R Tambo district municipality, as earlier on announced by the Minister.
In our oversight work, we have found that the shortage of skills and a lack of professionalism negatively affect the
public service in all levels. In municipalities recruitment structures tend to allow too much political interference in selecting and managing senior staff. This results in a turbulence in senior posts which in turn undermines the moral of public servants and citizen and loss of confidence in the state.
The report of the Auditor General has raised challenges pertaining to human resources in local municipality as one of the factors which contributes to the underdevelopment as monies which are meant to address service delivery issues, are wasted paying consultants, while retaining a very high salary bill.
Local government, many of which have experience a severe deterioration in basic service delivery in recent years, needs to institutionalised the financial management reforms, where there is a significant under-spending. The development and retention of a capacitated human resource it’s a critical factor that needs to be taken into consideration in the quest to building a developmental state. It gives the state a competitive edge and that enables transformation to take place.
We must make a public sector attractive to young professionals who are beaming with new ideas and will come up with innovative solutions. Hence, we appreciate the training of 390 young people and those municipalities who subsequently absorb them, as announced by the Minister in her speech earlier on.
We further call upon the department to expedite the process of remodelling the community works programme. We welcome also the target, as announced by the Minister of 250 000 participants for this year.
On the deployment of qualified councillors and staff, we are headed towards the local government, as announced by the President on 27 October. The ANC has been engaged in a political discourse about the calibre of public representatives, that it must deploy. The ANC will ensure that in its internal system we select only the best candidate for local government. As part of the renewal of the ANC, will select the best cadres for political deployment, and will further encourage cadres of the ANC to continuously improve themselves by studying further.
If we look at the state of metropolitan municipalities that were handed over to the DA through coalition after the 2016 local government elections. All of them have collapsed due to political and/or administrative failure.
The main content of the developmental state, is that it seeks to effect socioeconomic transformation, reduce inequalities, deepen transformation and inclusion of black women, youth people with disabilities, members of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex, LGBTQI communities.
We welcome the investment rural master plan and the hectares made available for this plan under the ANC our municipalities will use their power to buy local goods, services from local producers. The buying power of the state at the local level, should be used to stimulate local demand, create value chain and create a system of innovation.
Now, hon House Chair, allow me to address hon Brink. It appears as hon Brink is suffering from island of memories because he only remembers what he wants to remember. Yet, in his own party the white supremacist has forced Mmusi Maimane, Bonginkosi Madikizela, Herman Mashaba, Patricia De Lille, to
mention, but few to step aside in order for DA to preserve the white supremacy and white minority because DA, at this current juncture they are done and tired of experimenting with black leaders. Hon Brink worldwide ... [Inaudible.] ... ANC, stepping aside.
The recent by election results speaks volume about the confidence our people still have in the ANC. By the way, hon Brink, the ANC has won a ward from the DA in Knysna, Western Cape. Now the only thing that needs to step aside, it’s white supremacy and the DA. I thank you, hon House Chairperson.
Ms E R J SPIES: Thank you, hon Chairperson. Hon Chairperson, in considering this Budget Vote and annual performance plan, I cannot help but be reminded of our committee oversight last week. I left the North West province saddened, angry and hopeless, not only because of what I heard or what I saw, but also because of the total disregard for people. How can public representatives so blatantly slap their communities in the face?
After a week back in my home province - the Western Cape, I slowly recovered and have hope again. The recent rating by
Ratings Afrika Municipal Financial Stability Index found the top performing municipalities in the country to be in the Western Cape - whether you want to believe it or not. The top six performing municipalities are DA government, of which five are from the Western Cape. And the five worst performing municipalities are governed by the ANC. No, we are not saying that we are perfect. We have our fair share of mistakes, but on average we outperform the ANC in every single municipality where we govern. Mayor for mayor, audit reports for audit reports, street lights for street lights, and that’s why people move from towns and cities where the ANC governs to towns and cities where the DA governs in hope of a better life and better opportunities.
Hon Khoza, in terms of Khayelitsha, the ward councillors from that ward are from the ANC. They are missing in action. They are not attending meetings, and the best thing with the electorate can do issues, different leaders this time around who represents their interests. However, taking these challenges into account, our municipalities perform despite this. It is testament to the confidence that members of the public have in how their money is well managed and not stolen or wasted, as the case is in ANC municipalities.
So, what makes these top municipalities stand out from the rest? It is clearly not throwing another model at them or throwing millions at them. No, it is getting the basics right. It is about delivering proper services at the right time - proper and sound financial management, good governance and commitment to effective oversight and accountability. The top performing municipality in the country - Mossel Bay, is a perfect example of just that - over and above six consecutive clean audits, they get the basics right. To them it’s about implementing and monitoring the system at its most basic level, setting weekly work schedules with constant monitoring and immediate intervention, even when only half a day behind. They have a service committee that sits every week. It is about realising that every complaint about water leaks and potholes if not handled in 48 hours, it will culminate in a total breakdown, even without you noticing that failure. Long- term plans must be strictly adhered to, because every lapse essentially creates a new plan that not everyone else is aware of, resulting in different outcomes and possible chaos.
The Midvaal Municipality in Gauteng is another example of getting the basics right. Midvaal Municipality only spends 24% of its total revenue of R1,6 billion on salaries, which allows
for R130 million to be spent on various infrastructure projects throughout the year. They pay their creditors within
10 days on average, compared to the national average of 180 days. Unlike some ANC municipalities that run a salary bill that is higher than the equitable share, which means that once they have paid themselves there is no money to deliver any services to its residents.
The attorney-general last year strongly suggested that other municipalities in Gauteng replicate the Midvaal Municipality model of good financial and performance management. Yet the governing party refuses to reach out and learn from best practices, because their egos are bigger than their commitment to deliver the very people who elected them. I thank you, House Chair.
Ms D R DIREKO: Thank you, hon Chairperson, Ministers and Deputy Ministers, hon members of the House, members of the portfolio committee, ladies and gentlemen. Hon Chair, before I could start with my speech I just want to clarify some few things. Chair, we are on the eve of the local government election and we really understand when some of our colleagues from the opposition behaves like popcorns in a hot oil because
it is within the deoxyribonucleic acid, DNA, to grandstand and also to exaggerate.
We acknowledge the fact that we have challenges in local government as a result of corruption, poor planning and lack of accountability, et cetera, but not all that is lost. In the midst of what I have just mentioned, there are some municipalities and councillors who understand why they were elected into their positions who are dedicated to do their work and understand that we should put the interests of our people first. Funny enough, Chair, hon Brinks come from the political party where racism is the order of the day and he comes with an uninformed of allegations of racism in the ANC- led municipalities. The ANC is a nonracial organisation which I cannot say the same about DA. As hon Hadebe has indicated, where is Mmusi Maimane? Where is Lindiwe Mazibuko? Just to name the few. Chair, as the ANC we acknowledge that there are elements of corruption in some of the spheres of government hence in our national conference, the 2017, confess we have taken a resolution to deal with corruption. Corruption knows no colour knows no status and it is everywhere. Not so long ago the leader of the DA was all over social media for
R1,4 million, what was the money for and what is it that the
DA has done with the case because he was all over R1,4 million he was assaulted but he is the leader of the DA. However, they are quiet about the matter and they are here to tell us about corruption whereas we as the ANC we are acting on corruption.
Chair, hon Brinks spoke about the employment of capable public servants of which I agree with him because it was raised on the Auditor-General and in many reports that we have that some of the employees in our institutions are not qualified, however it is a bit like a hypocrisy because in the DA, the DA in Tshwane had at some stage employed Steven van de Villiers as the executive head of the mayor’s office and his only qualification that he had at the time was body building. I think as much as we raise issues we must also clean our houses before we can come with other matters. Hon members, local government is a critical sphere of government which is in the coalface of service delivery and it serves as a direct link between our people and government. The local government provide critical basic services such as water, sanitation, electrification, housing and many other community services.
The African National Congress has acknowledged the weaknesses in the local government and need for major intervention to
ensure that all our people receive service delivery that is due to them and to uphold their rights and dignity. Failure of local government will result will result in the provision of poor service delivery which will negatively impact to the lives of our people. One of the major impediments to effective service delivery is one of corruption and crime. Crime is destructive as this manifests in full effects of municipal assets and the vandalism of municipal infrastructure and facility. Our communities should take full ownership together with municipalities to protect the public assets and ensure that all those who damaged and steal the municipal properties are being brought to book.
The African National Congress has drawn a line in the sand on the endemic challenge of corruption and culture of no consequence management. Government structures and accountability in local government is central in addressing the challenges of corruption which steals from our people and needs to underdevelopment. As I’ve indicated, the ANC national conference of 2017, came out strongly against corruption and identified it as a strategic enemy to the creation of a developmental state hence we have taken resolutions that are dealing with corruption. Also, Chair, the Auditor-General in
the report titled; Not much to go around, yet not the right hands at the till, which looked at the state of financial management in local government highlighted some of the weaknesses of governance structures and systems on financial management. Arising out of the Auditor-General report, where the issues of municipalities that fail to achieve a clean audit, the issue of municipalities that redress, the issue of a wasteful and irregular expenditures which also impacts negatively on the municipalities.
Parliament has also led an amendment of the Public Act, to empower the Auditor-General to recoup funds on material losses in order to ensure consequence of looting supply chain management process for corrupt ends. This additional powers are consistent with the with the resolve of the ANC government to improve accountability and consequence management in the public service. Through the municipal revenue enhancement and audit outcomes programme, the department seeks to enhance such weaknesses as supported by this budget. The report of Auditor- General also rate that some of the challenges in local government centred around human resources and the main cause of wasteful expenditures that municipalities spend large sums
of money on financial consultants and yet at the same time retaining high salary being which is not value for money.
The development and retention of well capacitated human resources is critical in the quest of building a capable state especially a developmental state that is interacting with the market forces and seek to champion the developmental agenda.
The Municipal Systems Act which provide for the establishment of an M-pecs will also assist in providing more oversight on the municipal funds and will assist in ensuring that wasteful expenditure is kept. There is also a need to be spent in the implementation of section 71 of Municipal Finance Management Act, which provides financial system which must be put in place for early warnings.
Hon members, there’s a need to address the challenges faced by local government such as institutional political and financial witnesses in more holistic manner. As the committee we have adopted some Bills and we also referred some Bills to NCOP for public participation. Those Bills will assist in ensuring that we achieve our objectives. The political leadership in local government is vital is vital for the success of governance all political parties had obligation to play their oversight role
and to represent the interests of the people. The political and administrative interface is one of the major challenges for our municipalities. Interference of political leadership on administrative process is one of the cause of the abuse of public funds. A toxic relationship between administration and politicians result in straining of service delivery political infighting in all political parties have negatively impacted the services in the municipalities.
The other issues which stands as the challenge is the councillor after local government poses a leadership challenge as some of the councillors are new and at times lacks local government exposure. The exit of the experienced councillors erode the institutional capacity of the institution. In this regard the department and South African Local Government Association, Salga, should continue to support the councillors and provide ongoing training to the new councillors after the 2021, local government elections. Councillors are the representatives of the people and should always account to the people. The ANC understand the needs to have a well capacitated public services but also a political leadership that understand the complexity of the political economy to provide leadership.
In order to build a capable political leadership that is going to complement the public service, the ANC has put in place internal systems to ensure that its public representatives acquire the knowledge and skills to leave their areas of deployment. The ANC has established the O R Tambo as a school of leadership academy, which offers courses that will assist our deployees to understand their roles and responsibility.
Chair, our Portfolio Committee on Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs held its meeting weekly, as part of its oversight to ensure that there is accountability by local municipalities in order to improve the performance of municipalities. This has also given the portfolio committee the opportunity to zoom into the specific challenges hindering consequence management and the impediments to fight against corruption. This meeting also enabled us to get to the root cause of other financial challenges such as accumulating debt, lack of revenue collection and structural challenges which weakened the capacity of local government.
Government interventions such as section 129 and section 154 are one of the mechanism of government to intervene in addressing financial challenges in local government. This intervention requires continuous strengthening such as the do
not become an ad hoc. In most circumstances these interventions take takes place when municipalities are already on its weak position. This result in intervention not making the desired outcome and impact. The research by Treasury on section 129 intervention concurs with our observation. The main recommendation of this research paper titled; Mind the gap, is that what is required to tighten implementation of financial winning system is one piece of overarching legislation. That can be owned by both the Department of Co- operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Cogta, and Treasury and includes appropriate part of existing legislation that will guide the entire intervention framework.
Chair, we also welcome the inclusion of the tabling of the monitoring and intervention Bill by the end of this current financial year. The creation of an ethical and capable developmental state requires the strengthening of local government ...
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms R M M Lesoma): ... hon
member, wrap up. You are left with less than a second.
Ms D R DIREKO: Okay, as I wrap up, the ANC we support the budget vote and we also recognise the efforts that have been made by government to include the traditional leaders in the running of the Council. Thank you, Chair.
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIPRERSON (Ms M R R LESOMA): Thank you, we
will now call the Minister of Co-Operative Governance and Traditional Affairs. Hon Minister, you are not audible. It’s much better. Thank you very much.
The MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS: Am I still not audible?
The ACTING HOUSE CHAIPRERSON (Ms M R R LESOMA): You are now
The MINISTER OF CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL
AFFAIRS: Thank you very much, hon members, but the interest of time I will not be able to refer to all of them. Starting with the hon Chairperson of the portfolio committee, we will provide information to ... [Inaudible.] ... all the time, when they ask for it, except where there may be issues, like the one I was checking. There are areas where we are still dealing
with disciplinary proceedings, and that information may not be readily available until we have done that. Thank you.
On what hon Hlengiwe said about the new programme. First of all, we reported on this programme last year, we were just giving the progress. Secondly, she should be happy, because these young people are not going to be depended on the state. They are going to be working and they are going to be creating jobs, forming co-ops, using the skills that they have now acquired, and they are going to be supported to start-up ... [Inaudible.] ... So, she should be happy. They are not going to be working only for two days a week, they will be working all the time.
Coming to hon Spies, I just want to say yes, the DA municipalities might be well run, but if you look at informal settlements, at how people live there in some of the townships, you may find that the impact is not seen there in the dignity of people’s lives in a better life for all. So yes, you must run the municipality well, but it must ... [Inaudible.] ... to a better life for people. I can go through Mossel Bay ... [Inaudible.] ... even just access to water.
I just want to deal with what hon Brink said because I think he is right when he said things went wrong at the beginning. And, I will tell you which things went wrong at the beginning. Things went wrong at the beginning when our land was stolen and taken by force. When our people were put in dormitories in the townships to provide cheap labour in the cities and the cities were only accessed by white people and at night there curfews for black people. So, you had to be out of the city at a particular time; that’s what went wrong at the beginning.
When education was free and compulsory only for white people, that is what went wrong at the beginning. When rural areas were left without electricity, without clean water, proper roads, no schools, no clinics or hospitals, and were left there to provide cheap labour for mines and farms; that is what went wrong at the beginning. When there were job reservations for white people who may not even have gone beyond primary school, but jobs were reserved for them; that is what went wrong at the beginning.
When municipalities were there and were servicing white people; that’s what went wrong at the beginning. When the economy was monopolised by a few, and the rest of the black people were left out of the economy; that is what went wrong at the beginning.
When those who fought for freedom, the freedom fighters like Tata Mandela were caught ... [Inaudible.] ... that’s what went wrong at the beginning. When they were locked up in prison for years; that’s what went wrong at the beginning. When ... [Inaudible.] ... their bodies were burned, and those who were burning them were sitting and enjoying braai next to that; that's what went wrong at the beginning.
Even now, you can see the legacy of what went wrong at the beginning. Take the Western Cape itself, look at Langa, Nyanga, Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain, it is not different from Camps Bay and Bishop’s Court and many other ... [Inaudible.] ...
So, that is what went wrong at the beginning, and not what you are talking about because that is not where the beginning is. So, you must identify where the beginning is, and we will be able to identify what went wrong.
Now, because I couldn’t finish my speech, I wanted to thank the portfolio committee, Salga, and all the entities that we work with; the Demarcation Board & Commission for promotion & protection of Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities. I also want to thank the IEC that we are working with on local government. I also want to thank the staff, and the Director Generals in the two departments. And, I want to thank the Deputy Minister, who is now holding a position for two Deputy Ministers because we lost one of the Deputy Ministers, so I thank you very much. Thank you, Chair.
The mini-plenary session rose at 16:14.