In a recent online interview, Wayne Duvenage, CEO of the Organisation for Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) and Zukiswa Kota, Programme Manager at the Public Service Accountability Monitor, discussed a number of local government issues with which we as Mafubians can identify. Some of the take-outs from the discussion are highlighted:
Enabling communities. In unity lies our strength. The success of local government lies within the efforts and voices from us all. There is a need for Radical collaboration. We as the community are the municipality – not the officials and politically appointed councillors. At local government level you just have to look at the auditor general’s report to see financial mismanagement to see deliberate placement of people who are incompetent to fulfil very important roles – Cadre Deployment anyone? The incompetence leads to massive amounts of money spent on consultants - money is wasted. The poorest of the poor that’s where the social injustice is felt so much harder, e.g. when ambulances aren’t available to take people who need care to hospital.
You get the government you vote for. We can start introducing leadership who answer to their constituency and not to their political parties. We must know the individual candidate we vote into power and not just the political party. We need people to participate in our democracy by showing up for elections. In 2009 the people of Giyani were promised clean drinking water. It is now 2023 – with millions spent, there is little to show for it. The same applies for Mamello and Phomolong sections of Namahadi where MBF found sponsors to complete the pipeline but municipal management preferred to appoint a contractor. The end result is that after millions was spent, the community still have no water! Societies and businesses need to band together, work collectively and network through their business associations to formulate cases and hold errant councillors to account.
Active citizenry, do repairs yourself (not the best way) get court order attach municipal assets or get them to pay for repairs (potholes, sewerage plants etc.). You cannot sit and do nothing. Call out to businesses to get involved and support active communities in doing this in a constructive and responsible way to hold councillors accountable. Formulation of multi stakeholders involving the community with the municipality. Civic education. Action for accountability. Municipality must put up minutes nod Council meetings on the municipal website for Public scrutiny Corruption and incompetence erode the benefits that should reach you as a citizen.
If you have a spare few minutes, watch the video at https://bit.ly/3Y2YPma
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