Office of the Premier Budget Speech 2012/13

Address by the Acting Premier of the Northern Cape Province, Ms Grizelda Cjiekella, on the occasion of the tabling of Budget vote 1 of the Office of the Premier to the Provincial Legislature on 31 May 2012

Honourable Speaker
Members of the Executive Council
Members of the Provincial Legislature
The Director General of the Northern Cape Provincial Government
Mayors and Councillors
Distinguished Guests
The Community of the Northern Cape
Comrades and Friends
_________________________________

Kindly allow me to deviate from the essence of my address for just a short while. I am certain that both as South Africans and as citizens of the Northern Cape, you will find my reflections and comments relevant to and befitting an occasion such as this.

Honourable Speaker

I stand before you as a child and daughter of this great and wonderful Province called the Northern Cape;

I stand before you as an African woman who only 19 years ago, together with the vast majority of South African citizens, was considered an inferior citizen by the apartheid junta;

I stand before you as a mother who not only wishes the best for her children, but for all the children of the Northern Cape; and in so doing, reinforcing the noble aims and objectives of Child Protection Week;

I stand before you, with every ounce of the humility I possess, as a woman Acting Premier;

And lastly, but more importantly, Honourable Speaker, I stand before you as a product of our glorious Movement of the People in the form and stature of the African National Congress, whose policies and teachings became and are currently central to the lives of the greater part of the South African population from that seminal and epoch-making day on 8 January 1912.

Honourable Members

From a national and indeed a Provincial perspective, and in adhering to the Ruling Party’s programme to mark its centenary Celebrations, today marks the last day of the month in which we are celebrating the life and times of one of the Presidents of the African National Congress, namely, Pixley Ka Isaka Seme.

He was correctly described as an orator, lawyer, author and an intellectual of note.

In proclaiming the renewal and success of the African continent, he said:

“The brighter day is rising upon Africa. Already I seem to see her chains dissolved, her desert plains red with harvest, her Abyssinia and her Zululand the seats of science and religion, reflecting the glory of the rising sun from the spires of their churches and universities.

Her Congo and her Gambia whitened with commerce, her crowded cities sending forth the hum of business, and all her sons employed in advancing the victories of peace- greater and more abiding than the spoils of war. Yes, the regeneration of Africa belongs to this new and powerful period! It therefore must lead to the attainment of that higher and advanced standard of life”.

At this moment, it is also apt to reflect on the commemoration of Africa Day on 25 May, for it was on this day in 1963 when leaders of our Mother Continent converged to give birth to the Organisation of African Unity, which is now called the African Union.

And in hailing the prophetic words of Tata Pixley Ka Isaka Seme, when he said, and I repeat: “The brighter day is rising upon Africa. Already I seem to see her chains dissolved, her desert plains red with harvest, her Abyssinia and her Zululand the seats of science and religion, reflecting the glory of the rising sun from the spires of their churches and universities”, please join me, Honourable Members, in applauding the efforts of each and every person who contributed to Africa and indeed, our very own Northern Cape Province, as being the preferred site for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope.

However, in order to be inclusive, the SKA Organisation agreed to consider constructing one of the three SKA receiver components in Australia. Two will be constructed in Africa. A meeting of the members decided to split the project which is an unexpected decision given the search for a single site. We had hoped the unambiguous recommendation of the SSAC would be accepted as the most sound scientific outcome. We accept the compromise in the interest of science and as acknowledgement of the sterling work done by our scientists and the excellent SKA project team.

An important aspect of the site decision, Honourable Speaker, is the recognition of the MEERKAT telescope being designed and built in the Northern Cape by South African scientists and engineers, as a critical step towards the implementation of the SKA. The MEERKAT will supplement the sensitive SKA Phase 1 dish array, providing a majority of the collection area of what will be the most sensitive radio telescope in the world.

Honourable Speaker, given the positive developments with regard to the SKA and our provincial economy, we have an excellent opportunity to define the type of University we want, taking into account areas such as science, astrology, technology and renewable energy.

Indeed, in our collective excitement pertaining to the exact location of the University, we are pleased to note that barring the unforeseen, the announcement will be made within this quarter.

Honourable Speaker, major infrastructural projects for the country, including the Northern Cape Province, was announced by President Jacob Zuma in his State of the Nation Address.

As a Province we can expect major infrastructural projects which will be funded by National Government. The Sishen Iron Ore line is such a major project and, as a matter of course, the Province will benefit from various downstream projects.

Honourable Speaker, in my capacity as the Acting Premier of the Northern Cape Province, I hereby present for consideration of this august House the Budget Vote of the Office of the Premier.

The Office of the Premier has many functions imposed on it by the constitution of our country and a number of other pieces of legislation.

One of the functions that the Office of the Premier is charged with is the task of ensuring and facilitating policy coherence in the Province. It is this office, in whatever it does, that ensures policy coherence throughout the provincial government and whether such policies are in accordance with national imperatives. The Premier’s Office must ensure that these policies support the overall objectives, programmes and outcomes of government. We clearly need to enhance the government machinery to move swiftly in changing inconsistent policies, mitigating those policy options that breed unintended consequences, recognise that such outputs exist and at the same time to manage them accordingly. In doing and carrying out these policy functions, the Office of the Premier furthermore needs to ensure that contradicting policy outcomes that are not in tandem with government objectives are minimised and eliminated if and where possible.

Honourable Speaker

It is therefore by way of the above assertion that we endeavour to ensure that the Provincial Spatial Development Framework, in partnership with the National Department of Rural Development, is concluded by July 2012. Consequently we are working together with the same department to ensure that the landscape of old order legislation, including the current National Development Facilitation Act and the Northern Cape Planning and Development Act are in the process of being reviewed and or repealed so that we come up with a totally new Provincial Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Legislation dispensation that will ensure integration, with coherent policies that will lead us to a structured provincial vision with clear measurable targets and programmes that will facilitate the achievement of better outcomes.

It will be in this financial year that all efforts will be pursued to develop and arrive at Provincial Vision 2025. It is this imperative that will see us in this financial year moving to define what challenges are facing the Northern Cape, what kind of Province we want to build and what kind of province our people want within the context of a long term plan.

Honourable Speaker, we have agreed that by the end of this financial year we would have a fully functioning Provincial Nerve Centre which will, figuratively speaking, stand on three legs, namely planning, monitoring, evaluation and spatial referencing of data commonly referred to as GIS. This will allow us to institutionalise the planning function in the Office of the Premier within the broader context of the Provincial Administration.

Honourable Speaker, the Office of the Premier must also monitor and evaluate the government programme of action. Central to the monitoring and evaluation of the government programme of action is the co-ordination of all efforts. This function finds expression through the Provincial Executive Council being led by the Premier, Exco Clusters, both Political and Technical and special or task oriented Exco committees, HOD Forums, Premier’s Intergovernmental Relations Forum, other co-ordinating forums led by the Office of the Premier, and the provincial government budget process.

We are therefore obliged to move in the direction of developing the Provincial Government’s capabilities to monitor the overall performance of government and its agencies, evaluate the impact of programmes and raise the alarm where performance is not up to the expected levels and to get and or commission appropriate interventions.

Honourable Speaker

In the interest of enhancing our co-ordination, monitoring and evaluation functions, the Premier’s Office has procured an electronic Monitoring and Evaluation System for the Provincial Administration that will provide the necessary eagle’s view on what is happening in our Province from a government perspective.


Honourable Speaker, I now draw your attention to the imperatives of institutional development of the state in terms of organisational synergy and skills development, both for the public and private sectors to put our province onto a new economic growth path.

In this financial year institutional development will concern itself with creating an efficient, effective and development oriented public service and an empowered, fair and inclusive citizenship. With what we have been allocated, we will indeed focus on matters of ensuring quality service delivery and accessibility thereto. It is our firm view to ensure that all service delivery centres will conduct service user satisfaction surveys to get feedback from the citizens on public services. Furthermore, the Office of the Premier will in this financial year, in partnership with all relevant stakeholders, develop geographic access norms for services rendered by the Provincial Government.


Honourable Speaker

We will also step up our efforts of responsiveness aimed at improving service delivery standards of departments and at the same time improving waiting and turn around times at some departments and service delivery points. We will ensure, through the Frontline Service Delivery Programme, that such challenges are accordingly resolved. Frontline Service Delivery will constitute our main tool in monitoring and evaluating access to services, service satisfaction and improving service delivery standards. To this end, we have already developed a 2012/2013 service delivery points visitation programme.

We have for the new cycle already ensured compliance with regard to the submission of Service Delivery Improvement Plans by all sector departments signed off by the respective MEC’s. Government deserves value for money in what it seeks to do for our communities. As a critical element we will partner and work closely with Provincial Treasury to assess all services provided, programmes and projects on the principle of whether we are receiving value for money. We will, together with Provincial Treasury, compile quarterly reports on sector departments to explore the value for money principle.

Honourable Speaker

We will furthermore enhance our business process systems, rights and delegations to ensure full implementation and compliance with Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA). As a consequence of this, our anti-corruption initiatives and capacity will be enhanced. To this end, we have as a Provincial Government facilitated an accredited training programme for supply chain management practitioners that commenced in October 2011.

Honourable Speaker

In line with the Forum of South African Directors General Plan for improving service delivery through changing the way government works, we are in the process of completing a similar plan in the Province. The focus of the plan would be to ensure and improve administrative and managerial efficiency and effectiveness in areas which are within the powers of accounting officers.

Honourable Speaker, in the review of the Annual Performance Plan of the Office of the Premier, we have conceived and nurtured a mindset that we, in partnership with all sector departments and municipalities, are going to ensure that our government does things to change the lives of our people for the better.

This office is about ensuring and facilitating policy coherence and coordination, strategic and long term planning to give rise to a coherent provincial vision in order to enhance the capacity of the state to deliver through institutional development. For these and other functions of the Office of the Premier we have been allocated R150, 419 million for 2012/2013.

This allocation is divided as follows in three programmes that constitute Vote 1.

Programme 1- Administration’s share is R64, 179 million.

Programme 2 – Institutional Development’s share is R51, 647 million; and

Programme 3 – Policy and Governance’s share is R34, 593 million

With this budget we would pursue our vision of a safe, democratic and prosperous province with an empowered, diverse and inclusive citizenry.

Honourable Speaker

Goods and services amount to 32% of the total budget figure. Our transfer payment in terms of the percentage of the total allocation translates to 11% and capital payments stand at 1%. Allow me therefore, Mr Speaker, to look at the allocations as per the specific programmes and sub programmes. The intention of Vote 1 is to provide strategic leadership, direction and coordinated planning, monitoring and evaluation of developmental programmes to improve the quality of life for all the people of the Province.

To attain its vision and mission, the Office of the Premier is guided by the strategic goals which find expression in the three programmes that constitute Vote 1. Furthermore these three programmes are made up of twenty sub programmes.

Programme 1, which is called administration, is made up of the following sub programmes:

Premier’s Support: Its purpose is to provide efficient and effective personnel, strategic, operational, administrative and secretariat support to the Premier. The strategic objective of this sub programme is to ensure that the Premier fulfils her constitutional, statutory and political obligations and to implement the electoral mandate through providing effective and efficient support and assistance to the Premier. The total budget allocated to Premier’s Support in fulfilment of all its strategic functions is R11, 005 million.

The next sub-programme under Programme 1 called Administration is Director General’s Support. The strategic objective of this sub- programme is to improve provincial government operations through providing strategic co-ordination, oversight and logistical and committee support services to the HOD’s structures and other sub-sub structures of the Provincial Administration.

The budget allocates an amount of R15, 522 million for all these critical but strategic functions.

In all organisations that span over years of existence, security and records management constitute an important element to preserve the corporate memory and provide for a safe working environment. The Office of the Premier is no exception, thus for Security and Records Management, which is the third unit under Programme 1, a budget allocation of R7, 711 million is made.

In wrapping up the allocations as budgeted for all units under programme 1, we are now going to provide a brief indication of the units that deal with Executive Council Support and Financial Management.

The purpose of the Executive Support Unit is to provide strategic, policy and operational support to the Executive Council through secretariat services, programmes, decision management and implementation to enable the Executive Council Clusters to function optimally. As a result, the Executive Council Support Unit is allocated R4, 630 million to ensure and improve the effectiveness of the Executive Council through rendering quality secretariat and administrative services to the Executive Council, its Committees and to facilitate outreach services for engagement with the communities of the Northern Cape.

Honourable Speaker, it is our commitment that we, as an office, are committed to ensuring that our financial management must be in good health. It is also our commitment to encourage and inspire all other sector departments to look up to us in the manner in which we manage our financial resources. This unit has been allocated a budget of R25, 311 million to manage our total allocation of R150, 419 million.

Programme Two is Institutional Development. As indicated earlier this is about the capacity of the state and improving and strengthening that capacity. The functions under this programme as embedded in Outcome 12, range from:

Organisational arrangements, design and redesign;
Employment, training, human resources management and Employee health and wellness;
Salaries and conditions of service;
Labour relations and legal services;
Information management and technology; to
Transformation and change management.

For all the strategic co-ordination to enhance our strategic human resource responsibilities, an amount of R1, 455 million has been set aside.

In dealing with all the above, institutional development constitutes nine different units. Its purpose is to co-ordinate and provide strategic leadership to all provincial departments with regard to transversal corporate issues to enhance transformation of the public service. Consequently Human Resource Administration is budgeted to receive R4, 952 million to manage and co-ordinate the human resource administration function provincially and in the Office of the Premier.

The Human Resource Utilisation and Capacity Development objective is to ensure skills development, and effective employment entry into the public service, performance management and development of policy in the human resources arena. It also renders human resources development and performance management services and ensures full compliance with all relevant policy imperatives and legislation in the public service and the Office of the Premier. Furthermore, to ensure co-ordination and support is provided to all provincial departments on Human Resources Development and Performance Management strategy matters, this unit’s slice of our total budget allocation is R15, 007 million.

To ensure that we provide professional organisational development services to contribute to continuous service delivery improvement, Honourable Speaker, an amount of R4, 062 million has been allocated. With this money, we will monitor and evaluate legislative compliance with all provincial departments in relation to organisational design and job evaluations. This will be done with a view to obtaining organisational efficiency and effectiveness.

Our Labour Relations Unit has been given an amount of R2, 486 million to ensure sound labour relations and industrial stability through effective dispute management, collective bargaining and support to this Office and all Provincial Government Departments.

Our workforce needs to be kept healthy, thus our Employee Health and Wellness Unit concerns itself with these imperatives, namely the implementation of the HIV, TB and STI Management of the National Strategic Plan and Employee Health and Wellness Strategic Framework. The other is the implementation of Safety, Health, Environment, Risk and Quality Management of the Employee Health and Wellness Strategic Framework. For this work this Unit has been allocated R2, 586 million.

Information Communication Technology’s main purpose is to provide strategic IT Management and support to this Office and all other provincial departments. The technical support function to the Finance Unit’s supply chain management section for the procurement of IT goods and services, as well as the management of information technology assets, comes from this unit. This unit is also involved in the South Africa-Finland Programme to develop an inclusive provincial information society strategy and implementation plan aligned with the National Information Society and Development Plan. Moreover, this unit is also responsible for the Thusong Service Centre Programme in the Province. To pursue its purpose and functions, the budget makes an allowance of R10, 189 million.

The Legal Services Unit, which provides legal advisory services with regard to litigation, contracts, legal opinions, drafting and certification of legislation, is given a budget of R5, 377 million. This money will be utilised to ensure that comprehensive and well co-ordinated legal advisory services are rendered to this Provincial Government to ensure compliance with the law.

Communication Services has an overaching responsibility to provide an efficient and effective communication function to enable the Premier, Exco, the Director General, HOD’s and all other government Senior Management Members to attend to and communicate the strategic goals of government in the execution of their duties. Citizen engagement and public participation, as described by Outcome 12, is a responsibility further undertaken by this unit. As a result, this unit receives a total budget allocation of R3, 205 million.

At this point, I consider it relevant to state that, Mr Speaker, since the inception of the Presidential Hotline in 2009, a large volume of calls have been received by the Northern Cape Provincial Government indicating both the need for such a service and the eagerness of citizens to interact with Government. Amidst some challenges that are still being experienced with respect to the service, these need to be addressed urgently by Departments and Municipalities to improve service delivery.

The matters reported are mainly of a service delivery nature namely: Water, Housing, Roads, Health and Electricity. Given the fact that most of these services are rendered at the coalface of government; we are also highly reliant on responses from the municipalities and need their assistance in giving priority to the queries raised.

The Communications Directorate, which is responsible for the Presidential Hotline, is thus embarking on a process of training Public Liaison Officers at municipal level on how to use the IT-based system so that they can start playing a more direct role in attending to calls assigned to them.

As the Provincial Government we remain steadfastly committed to the smooth functioning and success of the Hotline as a means to improving the lives of our people.

The Programme Support function, under Institutional Development, with its purpose being to provide strategic, administrative and management support to the DDG: Institutional Development, as well as the co-ordination and management of all units under this programme, has been allocated R2, 328 million.

Honourable Speaker, programme Three is made up of the following units:

Intergovernmental Relations, International Relations, Official Development Assistance and Protocol
Monitoring and Evaluation
Provincial Policy Management; and
Programme Support

The purpose of programme three is to strategically manage policies and strategies towards the achievement of sustainable provincial growth and development, and the monitoring and evaluation of the Government Programme of Action. We have indicated earlier that Programme Three has been allocated an amount of R20, 965 million for 2012/2013.

Honourable Speaker, kindly allow me to proceed to show this esteemed House how that big figure has been divided amongst all of the sub- programmes under this programme.

Intergovernmental Relations, International Relations, Official Development Assistance and Protocol is responsible to manage and co-ordinate provincial intergovernmental relations, including the African Peer Review Mechanism initiatives, international relations, the activities of the official development assistance programme and protocol services. This unit needs to ensure that there is provincial compliance with the IGR Act of 2005. Moreover this programme must ensure that provincial compliance, including our municipalities, adhere to the country’s international relations policies and that such engagements assist us to attain the Northern Cape’s development targets. The work of this unit needs to be driven by intergovernmental relations forums, thus it will be busy this financial year to look at all such forums, align them and ensure that a provincial IGR Framework is in place. Furthermore this unit is concerned with the facilitation and improvement of protocol implementation and capacity in the Provincial Government. For this work, the unit has been allocated a budget of R1, 931 million.

Government is very serious in improving the way in which government does its business. We have seen the department of Performance Monitoring and Evaluation in the Presidency undertaking a number of initiatives to shape the way government works. Similarly the Office of the Premier has set-up a Monitoring and Evaluation Unit to monitor and evaluate governments performance against National and Provincial priorities and targets.

For this financial year, this unit will do the following:

Provide strategic, policy direction, monitoring and support for EPWP, Frontline Service Delivery and Management Performance Assessment Tool initiatives.
Formulate and align the provincial programme of action in relation to the SONA, SOPA and the respective budget speeches of all MEC’s. This will ensure that the Premier’s Office plays a critical and leading role in ensuring the implementation of commitments and plans as outlined in the State of the Nation Address, State of the Province Address and the various budget speeches of MEC’s.

The budget has therefore made allowance for a total amount of R4, 307 million for the work of monitoring and evaluation. This amount should not be seen in isolation as we have indicated that the work of M&E is being institutionalised in all sector departments and municipalities. As we proceed with this work, we will have a much better view of the total provincial investment in the work of M&E throughout the Province.

Honourable Speaker, in view of certain challenges and in an effort to facilitate our work, we will host an Monitoring and Evaluation Indaba to:

Formulate a Provincial Monitoring and Evaluation Framework
Devise a seamless electronic monitoring and evaluation system that will take into account the bare essentials with regard to systems that are currently in use at both municipal and departmental levels.


Honourable Speaker, our Provincial Policy Management Unit is constituted as follows:

Special Programmes;
Policy Co-ordination, Research and Development; and
Development Planning.


The work of Special Programmes is to co-ordinate and facilitate the creation of an enabling environment for empowerment, advancement and socio economic development for Women, Children and Persons with Disabilities in the Northern Cape. This unit also endeavours to successfully assist in the transformation of the public service in the province in line with Batho Pele principles. To do this work, this unit will also see to the protection and promotion of human dignity, equity, freedom for women, children, persons with disabilities and the restoration of the moral fibre of our society through partnerships with all sector departments and municipalities and other social partners. The allocations have been made out of a total budget of R20, 965 million as follows for all sub-sub programmes under the sub programmes called Special Programmes:

Special Programme Directorate – R3, 046 million
OSW R7, 251 million
ORC R3, 381 million
OSPD R3, 245 million
MRM R4, 042 million



Policy Co-ordination, Research and Development will continue to co-ordinate the strategic planning function in the Office, co-ordinate performance information and ensure integrated policy implementation in the Provincial Administration. This will be done through the creation of an enabling environment for effective governance and service delivery through the maintenance of a stipulated set of policies. This unit will improve the accountability through the establishment and maintenance of integrated planning and reporting mechanism. The budget’s provision for this unit amounts to R3, 756 million.

The Development Planning Unit’s share of the total budget of the Office is R1, 677 million. With this allocation, the unit will, as its primary responsibility, enhance the harmonization, integration and alignment of planning between all three spheres of government.

The Programme Support Unit of Programme 3, is responsible for providing strategic leadership, co-ordination and support by giving guidance and facilitating processes for developing programme plans, implementation, reporting on performance and assessing performance of components in achieving programme objectives. R1, 957 million has be allocated to this programme.

Honourable Speaker, the transfer payment which we indicated earlier on constitutes 11% of our total allocation which translates to R16, 621 million. These transfer payments are mainly for the Premier’s Bursary Trust Fund and the Mme re ka Thusa Women’s Development Trust Fund.

Out of this allocation, the Premier’s Bursary Trust Fund receives an allocation of R12, 861 million.

The good work of the Premier’s Bursary Trust Fund will continue to be supported. In the financial year 2011/12 the Trust awarded loans and/or bursaries to 354 beneficiaries. Out of that number 27 beneficiaries completed their studies in 2011. This year the fund awarded loans and/or bursaries to 175 new beneficiaries in the following institutions of higher learning: Universities, Universities of Technology, National Institute of Higher Learning and Further Education and Training Colleges.

The Mme Re Ka Thusa Women’s Development Trust Fund receives a transfer budget payment of R3, 760 million. The aim of the trust fund is to develop women in the Northern Cape, particularly those in the rural areas to sustain themselves. The board of trustees is in place and the Office is in the final stages of appointing staff.

Honourable Speaker, this concludes how prudently we have made our allocations to the various programmes and sub programmes of the Office of the Premier. Our total budget allocation of R150, 419 million is given to us to do all of the things we have mentioned above.

Honourable Speaker, kindly allow me this opportunity to extend my sincere thanks to the Premier, Mrs Hazel Jenkins, in her absence, for her leadership and guidance; to all the MEC’s for their unwavering support; to the Director-General, Advocate Justice Bekebeke, and his dedicated team who have perfected the art of slicing the cake in proportion to needs; and the Chief of Staff in the Private Office of the Premier, Mrs Ramona Towell and her team, for their continued support, often under very trying conditions.

As I conclude, Honourable Speaker, let me urge all of us to work together to realise a better life for all the people of the Northern Cape. In having reached our mid-term mark of the current electoral term, I can confidently say that this administration has fulfilled major aspects of its mandate. We are also mindful that much more work still has to be done. As an inclusive government, I am certain that we can count on all government sectors and the broader community of the Northern Cape to work in unison in order that shortly we will realise our full socio-economic potential as a province.

I Thank You

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