Chris Hattingh MPL Democratic Alliance North West Provincial Leader
The ANC in the NW Legislature, clearly deeply divided, rejected a DA motion in the North West Provincial Legislature that the “Legislature registers its serious concern about the state of the North West Roads Infrastructure and that an emergency recovery plan be tabled as a matter of urgency.”
The DA motivated the motion by referring to regional offices of the North West Department of Public Works, Roads and Transport, who have been without fuel since November 2011 and without tar for repairing potholes since September 2011. Officials in many regions have been hanging around at offices fruitlessly for months waiting for the new budget that would come into effect on the 1st April 2012 in order to use the NW Government’s “yellow fleet” – graders, trucks etc.
In response acting MEC Elisha (the incumbent MEC Mahlakeng has mysteriously been absent for almost 6 months) admiited widespread graft in the Department and stated that he discovered that the fuel crisis in the Department must be blamed on the fuel supplier contracted by the Department operating from Kwa-Zulu Natal.
In supporting the DA’s motion all opposition parties castigated the NW Government on its failure to maintain the NW Roads.
In the debate the DA welcomed the effective abdication of the NW Government’s responsibility to maintain its own provincial and regional roads to the SA National Roads Agency – the only viable alternative to the failing NW Government’s lack of maintenance.
The DA pointed out the, contrary to the commitments of the President and the NW Premier that 10 roads will be upgraded by SANRAL, the number has dwindled within weeks to 6 only as was disclosed in the MEC of Finance’s budget speech.
The DA welcome the number of ANC members not supporting the rejection of the motion – an indication that the lack of capacity and lack of delivery in the NW is slowly becoming a reality even within the ANC’s own ranks.