- Hon. MEC, I would like to focus on the metro, Ethekwini, as the MF believes that certain service delivery issues are transversal in other Districts and you have reported on these.
- In terms of the current water and sanitation infrastructure budget, an amount in excess of R21 billion is required as per the municipality. One third of the city’s revenue comes from residents and we need to know the percentage of non-payers in each district. In Msunduzi, many politicians are non-payers and have been named in the media. The proposed tariff hikes of 8,5% and 14,59% for water and electricity respectively will be met by more non-payment as residents are facing dire economic challenges given the COVID-19 impact. In Chatsworth eg: residents are pleading to me as an MP that bread bought on account from local tuckshops costs almost R20, fuel has gone up and they cannot make ends meet with high tariffs, yet they’re dealt with major water and electricity outages.
- The MF is concerned with the aging infrastructure in Chatsworth, Phoenix, Verulam and Tongaat. The municipality stated that upgrades will start in the next 2 to 7 years. This is bad planning. The MF supports the department in taking control of the MIG grant.
- Another issue of slum clearance is an important Programme but sub-standard housing costing between R100 to R200 thousand is not acceptable. The Human Settlements funds the Province gives Ethekwini must be monitored on both sides as clearly, we are not getting value for money and face more protests.
- The other area causing distress is the erratic grass cutting cycles of all Municipalities. The EPWP is not being well managed. The Parks and Gardens directorate needs to be monitored and put on terms like the enforcement of all National budget and performance guidelines, which the MF supports. A further problem is the clearing of bushes along roads controlled by Municipalities eg: Phoenix and Tongaat, please attend to these Hon.MEC.
- We can embark on ways to save natural water but this is counterproductive if we waste rainwater that can be harvested through proper drainage on roads under municipal control. This cannot be accomplished by blocked drains with alien overgrowths or litter pollution or missing manhole lids. These need attention.
- Local government elections are around the corner and many residents are apathetic whether service delivery will improve in many areas I work in, however the MF is confident and will support this R1.7 billion budget in the hope that you, Hon. MEC are promising that these burning issues will be corrected with stronger monitoring for compliance to National guidelines and will enforce regulations.
- Thank you.
Debated by: Hon. Shameen Thakur-Rajbansi
Minority Front Leader (KZN Legislature)
Date: Fri 21 May 2021
Time: 09:00 to 17:30
Word Count: 445 Words