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SALGA NEC Lekgotla assess the State of Local Government in Limpopo




Posted: 05 March 2020

The South African Local Government Association (SALGA) NEC is having its three-day (04 – 06 March 2020) Lekgotla to reflect and direct strategic decision-making regarding local government matters to inform the SALGA business plan at the Fusion Hotel in Polokwane, Limpopo.

The Lekgotla further aims to provide an opportunity to engage with key stakeholders that play a vital role in the sector.

Moreover, ahead of the 2021 Local Government Elections, the NEC finds it imperative to reflect on key developments in order to inform the consolidation of a developmental state. It is necessary to reflect on the role and functioning of Organised Local Government and its role in representing, supporting, advising, promoting and developing the sector.

As SALGA is required to play a central role in guiding the policy direction at the local level, the NEC is gathered today to:

  • Reflect on the past performance of the organisation, both successes and failures;
  • Consider the external environment, and how changes will impact the local government and SALGA’s orientation;
  • Define what it is exactly that the organisation needs implement in the future;
  • Reflect on the implementation of the organisation strategy; and
  • Identify institutional arrangements to enhance strategy execution i.e. Deployment to IGR structures, Parliamentary and Legislature interface.

In attendance was the provincial Department of Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements, and Traditional Affairs (CoGHSTA) MEC Basikopo Makamu who said that “we can't rely on the courts to defeat the manifestations of opportunism.” As local government we need to continuously work together and implement resolutions to make the sphere work.

The session assessed Limpopo state of municipalities, according to Provincial Director of Operations (PDO), Ledile Molope “Limpopo municipalities are yet to record 100% filling of posts at senior level.”

Reflecting on the 2018/19 Audit Outcomes, PDO Molope highlighted that the province received their first Clean Audit through the Capricorn District Municipality; adverse and disclaimer opinions decreased; and unqualified opinions saw a decline, the highest regression observed in the Sekhukhune District Municipality.

“We as SALGA Limpopo have implemented various programmes to support municipal operations,” said Molope, namely the:

  • Revenue, Credit, and Debts control workshops;
  • Innovative and New Revenue Capacity Building Programmes;
  • Offered training on the GRAP Standards on the preparation of Annual Financial Statements;
  • Audit Committee Capacity Building Programmes; as well as
  • Risk Management Capacity Building Programmes.

Makhado Local Municipality; Fetakgomo-Tubatse Local Municipality; Waterberg District Municipality and the Sekhuhune District Municipality presented on the state of their governments.

Key amongst developments is that high vacancy rates hamper service delivery; municipalities do not have Section 62 Appeal Committees in place and there are often no revenue enhancements strategies in place.

Moreover, “we need to look at the effects of amalgamation and how they have impacted municipalities," stated SALGA NEC Member, Cllr Thami Ngubane. High performing municipalities tend to digress after amalgamation, i.e. Fetakgomo-Tubatse Local Municipality.

The reflections and learnings of today’s session also indicated that “whenever we form systems they tend to lose sight, therefore, we need to monitor that these systems are implemented,” enhanced SALGA NEC Member, Cllr Bheke Stofile.

SALGA President, Cllr Thembi Nkadimeng deliberated that moving forward the NEC will “draft a commitment plan and check progress with all municipalities since the roadshow in the Free State, KwaZulu-Natal and now Limpopo provinces.”

The opening session of the Lekgotla tomorrow, 05 March, will be addressed by Hon. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Minister for COGTA, Hon. Amos Masondo, Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP), among others.
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