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SALGA host a Small Town Regeneration Conference in Northern Cape

Posted: 12 July 2016


Today, SALGA Northern Cape, in conjunction with the John Taolo Gaetswe (JTG) District Municipality; Ga-Segonyana, Gamagara and Joe Morolong local municipalities convened a Small Town Regeneration Conference under the theme “Small towns, new futures”.

Small Town Regeneration is one of the flagship initiatives of SALGA aimed at targeting small towns as entry points to effective spatial transformation, stimulation of economic growth and employment.

In the Northern Cape, Kuruman and Kathu in the JTG district were selected as pilot sites for this initiative based on Cabinet’s decision to prioritise 27 distressed rural districts for development; as well as the well thought decision of SALGA Northern Cape’s executive committee.

This conference was held at the Ga-Segonyana town hall in Kuruman was attended by Executive Mayors and Mayors of the participating municipalities, local traditional leaders, guests from the private sector, who were mostly from the mining area; academic researchers, officials from government institutions, municipalities and SALGA National, Gauteng and Northern Cape.

The John Taolo Gaetswe district, which covers about 6% of the geographic space of the Northern Cape Province is used primarily for extensive livestock farming. Despite long-term decline in agricultural output, the traditional mainstay of the region, the Karoo’s population and the economies of its largest service centres are growing. There are, real socio-economic needs and development backlogs.

This conference served as a platform for stakeholders to discuss the challenges and approaches towards realising the economic potential for small towns in the JTG district as well as their roles in the regeneration process. Through guided group discussions, we are expected to determine the trends, challenges and opportunities of the towns focusing on the contribution of small towns to economic growth of the country;

Cllr Willie Johnson shared the contextual framework of the two-day session.
“Our discussions should be meaningful enough to enable us to come up with practical action plans with timeframes. It is through close public private partnerships that some of the gains to be earned from the opportunities offered by the JTG district can be maximised. Delegates were urged to participate actively and tailor solutions that can assist the towns of Kathu and Kuruman to break the bondages of poverty and economic stagnation, said Councillor Johnson as he concluded his address.


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