Modern, Growing, Successful Province

COGHSTA Budget Speech 2012

18 May 2012

Address by Mr Kenny Mmoiemang (MPL) MEC for Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs to the Northern Cape Provincial Legislature on the occasion of tabling of Budget Vote 9 for 2012/13 Financial Year

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Honourable Speaker and Deputy Speaker
Honourable Acting Premier, Ms Griezelda Cjiekella
Members of the Executive Council
Honourable Members of the Provincial Legislature
Mayors, Speakers and Councillors
The Leadership of SALGA in the Province
Members of Provincial House of Traditional Leaders
Invited Guests
Comrades and Friends
Ladies and Gentlemen

Honourable Speaker,

Please borrow us a moment to pay our respects to former Minister of COGTA, Mr Sicelo Shiceka, who entered his post-life permanent place of rest on Saturday, 12 May 2012.

We want to say without fear nor favour that Comrade Sicelo Shiceka never betrayed our revolution.

He served in the Gauteng Provincial Government as MEC for Local Government and Development Planning between 1994 and 1999.

He was also the Chairperson of the Select Committee on Finance in the National Council of Provinces until he was appointed Minister of Provincial and Local Government Affairs in September 2008, and also as Minister of COGTA in May 2009.

Those of us who had the opportunity to work very closely with Mr Shiceka knew him as an outstanding fighter and architect of our democracy.

He was a remarkable hard worker and his impact was greatly felt in the Local Government Turn-Around Strategy. We will miss his energy and his principled leadership in the local government sector. He has made his lasting contribution in the government of the Republic of South Africa.

On behalf of the Acting Premier Griezelda Cjiekella and the Provincial Government of the Northern Cape, we wish to convey our heartfelt condolences to the family, relatives and friends of former Minister Sicelo Shiceka.

Honourable Speaker,

We also want to use this occasion to join multitudes of our compatriots and countless others across the World in congratulating the African National Congress as it celebrated its 100th Anniversary on the 8th January 2012.

A century of uninterrupted struggle for national emancipation is a monumental achievement of which the overwhelming masses of our people, Africa and Diaspora are justly proud.

Indeed, from its founding the ANC was established to forge African unity in the struggle for the total liberation of the continent as delegates from all over South Africa and the sub-continent descended on Waaihoek, in Mangaung on 8 January 1912.

These included workers, farmers, peasants, professionals, journalists, traders, churchmen, and chiefs, members of the African royalty, poets, musicians and authors.

Honourable Speaker,

Ours is for the total liberation of our people from all forms of oppression, socially and economically. Diversely united, inclusive non-racial, non-sexist and a prosperous society remains a key and fundamental objective of the ANC.

As it justifiably stands tall today with an experience second to none and yet conscious of the immense challenges that lie ahead, we, as the ANC, have vindicated the yearnings of all of our martyrs, heroes and heroines, not least the clarion call of one of our founders Pixley ka Isaka Seme who fore-told the establishment of the ANC when he said:

“The brighter day is rising upon Africa... Yes, the regeneration of Africa belongs to this new and powerful period. The African people... possess a common fundamental sentiment which is everywhere manifest, crystallising itself into one common controlling idea... The regeneration of Africa means that a new and unique civilisation is soon to be added to the world.”

On this historic moment in our revolution, we wish to pay tribute to many of the ANC leaders that have sterlingly built it into this revolutionary giant. We also salute all fallen cadres whose legacy remains firmly imprinted in the liberation heritage of this country.

This collective and many others shall remain our lodestars of revolutionary patriotism and commitment to national liberation.

Honourable Speaker,

Allow us to outline progress on the implementation of our policy priorities in the 2011/12 financial year.

With the budget allocation of R322 million, we rectified 270 houses, planned and surveyed 981 sites, serviced 1 456 sites and constructed 3 683 houses in various districts in the province.

About 1 555 beneficiaries were trained on the importance of maintaining their homes and creating a living space that is both valuable and beautiful.

We created 2 030 jobs in the Human Settlements sector as follows: 794 males, 174 women, 1 060 youth and 2 disabled persons.

Despite the limited budget allocation, which must service the whole of the Northern Cape, we achieved the following with regard to large scale Informal Settlements projects which have been identified by the National Department of Human Settlements as part of the National Priority Projects:

Lerato Park in Kimberley: The internal services to all 797 sites are 95% complete in Phase 1 of the project with the electrical reticulation almost 50% completed;
Ouboks in Colesberg: Of the 1 800 subsidy units to be built, 1100 units have been completed;
Pampierstad in Phokwane: Of the 2 220 units to be built, 774 units have been completed; and
Galowe in John Taolo Gaetsewe: The town planning layout has been completed.

Honourable Speaker,

Following assessment conducted by the Compliance and Audit Panel, the following Local and District Municipalities were granted accreditation based on the recommendations submitted by the panel:

John Taolo Gaetswe District Municipality and Emthanjeni Local Municipality were awarded Level 1 accreditation;
Sol Plaatje Municipality, Khara Hais Local Municipality and Siyanda District Municipality were granted Levels 1 and 2 accreditations.

This House must take note that Frances Baard and Pixley ka Seme District Municipalities were accredited in earlier years and Namakwa District is in the process of being accredited as well.

The Implementation Protocol Agreements have been issued to the Municipalities for signing, and once completed the District Municipalities will enter into Service Level Agreements with Local Municipalities in their jurisdiction in order to administer human settlements programmes in line with their appropriate level of accreditation.

Honourable Speaker,

Financial management and audit outcomes remain areas of great concern in our municipalities. Timeous submission of municipal Annual Financial Statements, AFS, also remains a challenge that we are continuously grappling with.

Reasons for these vary from lack of capacity, vacant CFO posts, to reliance on consultants.

For the submission of the 2010/11 Annual Financial Statements, only 19 municipalities submitted by 31 August 2011. 9 municipalities submitted between 1 September 2011 and 31 December 2011.

3 municipalities submitted between 1 January 2012 and 31 March 2012. To date there is 1 municipality still outstanding.

Of the 28 municipalities which have been audited to date, the outcome is as follows:

8 municipalities were unqualified with matters;
6 municipalities were qualified;
14 Disclaimers; and
4 still to be audited.

In addressing the immediate challenges identified in the audit reports, the Department conducted training workshops between January and March 2012 for officials in municipal finance departments in all the Districts. The intention was to capacitate these municipal officials.

Honourable Speaker,

Municipalities are paying huge amounts of money without getting the desired audit outcomes. This is due to the fact that they are having difficulties with municipal systems that are not integrated.

It is against this backdrop that Lefatshe Technologies was appointed to develop an Integrated Municipal System to integrate municipal Human Resources, Finance, Technical, and others. The pilot site was Khara Hais Municipality and the project had 3 phases. The system will go live on 1 July 2012.

We are happy to report that 25 of our 32 municipalities have established Municipal Public Accounts Committees, MPACs, and training raining has been provided to this effect.

The Department is currently assisting municipalities which have not yet established MPACs.

Honourable Speaker,

Although some of our municipalities are struggling to survive financially, there are examples of municipalities that are performing exceptionally well despite harsh financial and economic conditions. Such an example is Dikgatlong Local Municipality that serves the towns of Barkly West, Delportshoop and Windsorton.

After the entire management team was suspended during March 2010, the Department intervened and seconded an acting management team with the purpose to restore the financial viability of the municipality.

In the short period of one financial year the acting management implemented a Turnaround Plan with astounding results. Today, Dikgatlong Municipality is on the road to full recovery and has the potential to develop as one of the best performing municipalities in the Northern Cape.

The Department has also seconded senior officials to Renosterberg, Kamiesberg, Ga-Segonyana and Frances Baard municipalities.

Honourable Speaker,

Last year the Premier in her State of the Province Address announced an amount of R10 million dedicated to assist struggling municipalities to meet their service delivery obligations: Khotso, Pula Nala.

This amount was subsequently paid in instalments to the affected municipalities based on the business plans they have prepared and progress certificates of what they have achieved after the process of verification was completed.

Municipalities used this money for job creation and service delivery related projects.

In terms of the Municipal Infrastructure Grant, which supports the capital budgets of municipalities to fund municipal infrastructure and to rehabilitate existing infrastructure primarily benefiting the poor, for the 2011/12 municipal financial year, the expenditure was reported on:

Water & Sanitation R52,115 million
Multi-Purpose Sports Facilities R 2,749 million
Multi-Purpose Community Halls R2,469 million
Roads R 16,649 million
Solid Waste Removal R 1,160 million
Street/Community Lighting R 5,781 million
Storm water R 2,951 million
PMU Expenditure R 1,726 million

Honourable Speaker,

Regarding the basic municipal services, we want to report to this august House that:

The total number of households with access to basic water in the Province is 177 482 households which is 93.6% of the total number of households. 51 551 households of these 177 482 households are indigents. This means that households with access to potable water, that is water fit for human consumption, is 177 482 households;
The number of households with access to a basic service of electricity is 141 488 households of which 48 408 households are indigents. Access to electricity has increased from 81% to 82%;
The total number of households with access to basic sanitation in the Province is 160 000 households, which is 79.9% of the total number of households. The total number of Indigent households with Access to Free Basic Sanitation is 51 551; and lastly
The number of households with access to basic service refuse removal is 91 232 households.

Honourable Speaker,

Following the 18 May 2011 Local Government Elections, new municipal councils had to establish new ward committees as the term of the previous ward committees expired simultaneously with that of municipal councils.

To this end and in preparation of the mammoth task of training the ward committees, the department conducted a Provincial Workshop held over two days on 15–16 August 2011 in Upington.

The training workshop was organised by the Public Participation unit of COGHSTA and was attended by ward committee administrators, CDW mentors and two CDWs from each municipality.

We can safely say that to date, all ward committees have been established across the province, despite the challenges experienced in certain municipalities. Notwithstanding these challenges, municipalities were able to conclude their establishment phase.

Honourable Speaker,

All our 32 municipalities have benefited from the Municipal Systems Improvement Grant to the tune of R26 920 million. This grant is meant to address, amongst others, the implementation of by-laws, policies and systems that support local government legislations, effective information systems that supports effective service delivery.

The 5 District Municipalities each received R350 000 grant for fire services. They further received in total R3 583 million from the National Emergency Alarm and Radio System, NEAR grant, which is meant to assist in the communication systems, especially in rural areas.

We also want to report that Community Works Programme, CWP, played a pivotal role in mobilising communities to provide regular and predictable work opportunities at the local level. 4 sites were identified in Joe Morolong, Richtersveldt, Renosterberg and Kai !Garib municipalities.

The programme is spread over 16 wards as follows:

Richtersveldt – 4 wards;
Kai !Garib – all 9 wards;
Joe Morolong – 2 wards (wards 7 and 14); and
Renosterberg – 1 ward.

3 696 work opportunities were created through the CWP with 645 adult males, 1 173 adult female, 775 male youth and 1 103 female youth.

Honourable Speaker,

Coming to Traditional Affairs, an assessment on the State of Governance within the Institutions of Traditional Leadership was conducted. This was done to inform the strategic and operational plan of the newly established national Department of Traditional Affairs.

The actual assessment took place in Kuruman and was attended by about 110 representatives from various stakeholders that included provincial and national departments, municipalities, Traditional Leaders, Local and Provincial Houses of Traditional Leaders and Traditional Councils.

The outcome of the assessment was presented to the MEC on May 2011 and the Department identified the high level issues and actions flowing from the assessment report.

COGHSTA was actively involved in the process of consolidating all Traditional Affairs national legislation into a in a single consolidated Bill, namely the National Traditional Affairs Bill, which aims to address gaps and create space for future recognition of the Khoisan.

Honourable Speaker,

As the Northern Cape we will not be required to establish a Committee on Traditional Leadership Claims and Disputes as well as the recognition of traditional leadership positions of new communities.

We have been grouped together with the Free State and the Commission has already visited the Province on 6 February 2012. A list of cases to be investigated in the Province was submitted to the Commission.

In closing the 2011/12 financial year, we have taken stock of the challenges, consolidated our achievements and now move forward with a fresh vigour to build a sustainable human settlements and improved quality of household life.

We also continue to build an efficient, effective, accountable and responsive local government system and institutions of traditional leadership.

Honourable Speaker,

Human Settlements Vision 2030, on the road to 2050, is to no longer have poverty traps in rural and urban areas. It looks at total eradication of backlogs of plus 2.1 million housing units which translates to approximately 12.5 million people.

Most South African will have affordable access to services and quality environment not living in the isolation in the periphery of the cities.

New developments throughout the country will break away from old patterns and significant progress will be made in retrofitting existing settlements. In rural areas, targeted investments and institution reform will drive a revival of rural South Africa towards 2050.

Each-one-Settle-one Campaign was launched by the Minister of Human Settlements, Mr Tokyo Sexwale at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange with top 200 companies.

The aim of the Campaign is to motivate stakeholders, private sector institutions, donor agencies and ordinary citizens to help the department to reduce the housing backlog.

We call upon the private sector to come to the party and assist in settling a family.

As we have said previously, human settlement is no longer about building houses, it is about transforming our little towns to cities and building cohesive, sustainable and caring communities with closer access to work and social amenities.

Honourable Speaker,

The foreseeable large towns to become cities in the Northern Cape are Kimberly and Upington. Towns like Kuruman, Postmansburg and Kathu are fast growing to become cities in the future.

The inefficiencies and inequalities in South Africa’s settlements patterns are deeply entrenched, wherein you find townships developed and still being developed in the periphery of the cities and town far from places of work, shopping and social facilities.

To this effect, we will work closely with municipalities to ensure that all developments take place on land that are socially and economically viable. Where people and live, play, work, socialise and stay.

For the remainder of this current 5-year cycle which is 2012/13 to 2013/14, we have aligned our priorities with National Government’s service delivery priorities as follows:

Eradication of Housing Backlogs and Upgrading of Informal Settlements;
Rural Housing Development;
Fast-tracking Municipal Infrastructure Development through Municipal Infrastructure Grant;
Creating short-term jobs; and
Construction of houses and site services, increasing jobs in plumbing, electrical fittings, bricklaying, etc. In this regard, Community Work Programme and Operation Khotso, Pula Nala will create jobs through neighbourhood revitalisation projects.

Honourable Speaker,

The Human Settlements allocation for the 2012/13 financial year is R322 602 million for Integrated Housing Development and R16 949 million for the disaster relief which happened in January 2011.

We envisage rectifying 180 houses, planning and surveying 4 176 sites, servicing 1 382 sites and constructing 2 704 houses.

We will train 1 500 housing beneficiaries on value of title deed, maintenance and up-keep of their homes and greening their environment. 4 008 title deeds will be issued to home owners.

Over 2 000 jobs will be created with respect to labours and artisans in the construction industry.

Honourable Speaker,

As stated by President Jacob Zuma during the State of the Nation Address in February 2012:

“… from April, people earning between three thousand five hundred rand and R15 000, will be able to obtain a subsidy of up to R83 000 from Provinces, to enable them to obtain housing finance from an accredited Bank.”

As COGHSTA, we will roll-out the Financial Link Individual Subsidy Programme and the National Housing Finance Corporation which was appointed by the National Department of Human Settlements to assist us with the roll-out programme.

The first 26 beneficiaries in the Lerato Park project, earning between R3 501 to R15 000 will be assisted through the programme.

Honourable Speaker,

The Informal Settlements Upgrading Project, ISUP, still remains a priority for the Province. To this effect, construction of 223 housing in Lerato Park will commence. Pampierstad and Ouboks Projects will continue with the construction of the remaining houses.

We will also pioneer the development of affordable rental housing for the lower-middle income groups as of 2012/13 moving forward throughout the Province.

Honourable Speaker,

The Provincial Govan Mbeki Human Settlements Awards will be held on 23 May 2012, to honour the good work of the contractors in delivering sustainable human settlements. The National Awards will be on 31 May 2012 in Gauteng Province.

We will also host a Provincial Youth Summit during the course of June 2012, following the National Youth Summit that was conducted in the previous financial year.

Honourable Speaker,

We are cognisant of the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment that confront us. The ANC’s January 8, 2012 Statement directs us to “bring new energy and new ideas into the kind of society we want to build over the next few decades.”

This new trajectory on the New Growth Path demands that fire burns from all cylinders.

This sketches the context within which COGHSTA operates and unveils the delivery imperatives as emanating from Outcome 9.

Honourable Speaker,

When we deal with infrastructure development programme, we focus on both bulk infrastructure and municipal infrastructure, and this is at the centre of service delivery.

This year’s State of the Nation Address on infrastructure development introduced a new way of doing things, with the establishment of the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission, and the identification of Strategic Integrated Plans, SIPS.

The establishment of the Municipal Infrastructure Support Agency, in short MISA, lays a foundation for effective intervention to turn things around and it translates to a total of about 105 Local Municipalities in the Country of which 13 will be from the Northern Cape.

MISA will pave the way for the enhancement of both management and technical capacity of municipalities in terms of infrastructure related projects.

Our role as the Provincial Department will be critical in this process as we will be required to facilitate the finalisation of Integrated Support Plans for their Municipalities, especially the adoption by their respective municipal councils.

We will also be part of the implementation of the support plans for municipalities. Systems and processes will be put in place for strengthening the capacity of MISA for supporting municipalities.

Honourable Speaker,

During 2012/13, we will accelerate the implementation phase of the Local Government Turn-Around Strategy. As the Minister of COGTA said during his budget speech on 9 May 2012:

“We have identified five focus areas as constituting our agenda of fast-tracking the implementation of the turn-around strategy, in terms of which we seek to characterise a record of our performance as we commit to a programme of faster implementation. These are: Service delivery, Governance, Financial Management, Infrastructure development and Fighting against corruption.”

Our role with the National Department of COGTA in this regard will be to mobilise all the actors involved to give support to Municipalities.

The following municipalities will receive dedicated support and interventions from the National Department of COGTA during 2012/13 to 2014/15 financial year:

In terms of National Support for Rural Districts all municipalities under John Taolo District Municipality be given all the necessary support;
Gamagara, Tsantsabane, Sol Plaatje, and Phokwane will be supported in National Support for Informal Settlements;
For the National Support for Infrastructure Development, that is in terms of MISA, the following municipalities will be supported: Joe Morolong, Ga-Segonyana, Khai-Ma, Renosterberg, Mier, Magareng and Gamagara plus the 6 which the MEC must still identify in consultation with the Minister of COGTA;
Regarding National Support for Water and Sanitation, Khai-Ma, Renosterberg, Mier, Magareng, and John Taolo Gaetsewe District will be supported; and
For the National Support for Financial Distress, Kareeberg, Richtersveld, Renosterberg and Mier will be given the necessary support.

Honourable Speaker,

The Provincial Government has set aside R24 million to be used to ensure that we have resources to meet our commitments with regard to Operation Clean Audit 2014 within the municipal sphere.

With this allocation, we will intensify our efforts with Provincial Treasury to provide hands-on support to municipalities in improving their audit outcomes.

Provincial Treasury has appointed service providers through a tender process, to assist municipalities in improving their audit outcomes. Furthermore, COGHSTA has sourced additional capacity to provide training on GRAPP 17, asset management and other finance-related issues.

Entailed in the plans, is a reporting framework to monitor performance and impact measurement The objective is to advance Operation Clean Audit to support municipalities with adverse and disclaimer audit opinions.

We will also interact with municipalities not to appoint service providers who have not improved their audit outcomes over a number of years, and not transferring skills to municipal officials in Budget and Treasury Offices.

Honourable Speaker,

The Municipal Systems Amendment Act, 2011 was assented to by the President and enacted on 5 July 2011. This Act obliges the Minister of COGTA to make Regulations for a wide range of human resource related matters that affect the appointment and employment practices of senior municipal employees.

It is envisaged that the finalisation of the Regulations will require extensive consultations with labour and other key stakeholders culminating in delays.

We want to assure the House that the draft Regulations will be published in the Government Gazette for purposes of consultation, and thereafter for implementation. This will be done as soon as the consultation process has been finalised.

Honourable Speaker,

Without active community participation and empowerment, the challenge of ensuring effective accountable and clean local government will not be realised. We are committed to further strengthening the voice of communities and ensuring that all Councillors serve those they represent and are accountable to them.

Community participation in the structures of local government will be strengthened beyond what is happening in many areas. Consequently, the Provincial Government will work towards ward committees that are better resourced, more powerful and taken seriously by municipalities.

Honourable Speaker,

The Provincial Spatial Development Framework will be finalised in August 2012. This plan will be in line with the Northern Cape Planning and Development Act 7 of 1998, which requires that a Provincial Development and Resource Management Plan should be drafted.

With the financial support of the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform, the following municipalities will be assisted to develop their SDFs:

Namakwa District
Siyanda District
Kai !Garib and
Joe Morolong.

The House will know that we have been mandated through Outcome 9 to develop and implement a differentiated approach towards municipal finance, planning and support.

This intervention relates to smaller municipalities producing IDPs that focus on planning for the delivery of a set of 10 critical areas. The 10 critical services are:

Municipal roads and storm water management;
Electricity reticulation;
Refuse removal;
Refuse dumps and solid waste;
Traffic and parking;
Local sports and recreational facilities; and
Housing and Fire fighting.

This will provide the basis to review the current IDP Framework and the need to introduce a simplified framework that will assist municipalities to plan better and deliver services in an effective, efficient and sustainable manner.

We will during the course of 2012/13 pilot the simplified IDP framework with the following municipalities:

Joe Morolong
Khai Ma and

Honourable Speaker,

Municipalities, guided by the New Growth Path, and working with communities, will need to place job creation and sustainable livelihoods at the centre of their local economic programmes. In doing so, municipalities will need to ensure that there is equal access to employment and skills development for women and youth.

As stated during the tabling of the Northern Cape Appropriation Bill on 6 March 2012, the Provincial Government has set aside an amount of R50 million for Operation Khotso, Pula Nala to be utilised by COGHSTA and the Department of Roads and Public Works.

COGHSTA and Roads and Public Works and Roads are in the process of finalising a business plan which will outline what needs to be done to revitalise our townships. We believe that, though small in quantum, the amount would contribute enormously to the revitalisation of our townships.

Honourable Speaker,

Given the successful implementation of the Community Works Programme, for 2012/13 the sites will be increased from 4 to 10. The following additional municipalities will now benefit from the CWP:

Gamagara and

Honourable Speaker,

President Jacob Zuma had on 9 February 2012 announced that:

“Government will also table the National Traditional Affairs Bill which makes provision for the recognition of the Khoi-San communities, their leadership and structures.

It is important to remember that the Khoi-San people were the most brutalised by colonialists who tried to make them extinct, and undermined their language and identity. As a free and democratic South Africa today, we cannot ignore to correct the past.”

As COGHSTA, we will during 2012/13 to 2014/15, intensify our efforts to empower and support all Traditional Leaders, Head-men and Head-women, including Khoi-San Leaders.

The current Traditional Councils, which were established in terms of the North West legislation before the incorporation of John Taolo Gaetswe District into the Northern Cape, will be reconstituted.

The Acting Premier has addressed the special sitting of the Provincial House of Traditional Leaders to inform the members about the dissolution and reconstitution of the affected institutions. The elections of Traditional Councils will be on 14 July 2012.

The Department will work jointly with the Independent Electoral Commission to facilitate the elections of the Local House of Traditional Leadership and Northern Cape House of Traditional Leaders which will be on 23 May 2012 and 25 May 2012 respectively.

Honourable Speaker,

The Standing Committee on Constitutional Affairs, Public Participation held a Public Hearing on the Traditional Courts Bill yesterday, 17 May 2012 in Kuruman and we are awaiting the outcome of that hearing.

The Traditional Courts Bill seeks to affirm the recognition of the traditional justice system and its values, based on restorative justice and reconciliation.

It also wants to provide for the structure and functioning of traditional courts in line with constitutional imperatives.

We are aware of the challenges facing traditional affairs in our province, including lack of uniformity in policy and legislation that govern the affairs of traditional leaders.

We commit to work with national government to define the place and role of traditional leadership within our system of democratic governance.


Honourable Speaker,

I finally take this opportunity to table the budget of the Department of Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs for the financial year 2012/13, allocated as follows:
Per Programme Main Appropriation 2012/13 (Millions)
Programme 1: Administration R101 157
Programme 2: Human

R374 320
Programme 3: Co-operative

R 96 958
Programme 4: Traditional Affairs R 10 326
TOTAL R582 761

Item Description Main Appropriation 2012/13 (Millions)
Compensation to Employees R173 949
Goods and services R 63 981
Households R340 531
Provincial and Municipalities R 500
Machinery and Equipment R 3 800
TOTAL R582 761

Honourable Speaker,

The Department’s overall budget has decreased by 1% in the 2012/13 allocation, mainly due to the reduction on transfer payments.

The Human Settlements Conditional Grant has increased by only 2%, although the Province is faced with housing backlogs.

Payment for capital assets is decreased by 33% and this is due to the reprioritisation done by department.

There is no provision made for transfer payments to municipalities due to poor reporting, non adherence to Division of Revenue Act and non-spending by Municipalities.

The amount of R 30 288 million includes a R10 350 million funding received from the National Disaster Relief Grant for damages caused during January 2011 floods.

Honourable Speaker,

In conclusion, allow us to express our appreciation to Honourable Premier Hazel Jenkins by wishing her as full and speedy a recovery as is possible.

We also want to express our gratitude to colleagues in the Executive Council led by the Acting Premier, Honourable Griezelda Cjiekella for their unwavering support.

Our sincere gratitude to the Portfolio Committee members, chaired by Honourable Gladys Oliphant for their oversight responsibilities. We say keep up the good work.

We extend our profound thanks to our Traditional Leaders, Mayors, Councillors and the Leadership of SALGA Northern Cape for their cooperative support in guiding us on the needs of our people.

Our profound appreciation to the Provincial Auditor General, the Provincial Electoral Officer, LGSETA, DBSA and all our partners in Local Government and Human Settlements.

Many thanks to diligent officials of the Department of COGHSTA, from the cleaner to the Head of Department, Mrs Greta Apelgren-Narkadien and the Executive Management Team, as well as Staff in the Office of the MEC.

My special thanks to the African National Congress for giving us the responsibility in a department that exposes us more closely to our communities’ real challenges.

I thank you!

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