By Jacques Julius MP, DA Gauteng Member of the NCOP:
This week, from 21 to 24 July 2015, Gauteng members of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) are set to conduct oversight visits to various government service delivery programmes and projects across the West Rand.
The purpose of this week’s NCOP week is to advance the developmental agenda of municipalities and rectify the shortcomings identified when oversight is conducted.
However, while this work is critical to ensure municipalities provide quality services to residents, this week’s visits will be of little benefit, as not all projects to be inspected were implemented by West Rand local municipalities.
Residents of the West Rand have been faced with less and less job prospects as a result of the steady decline in mining and agricultural activities, and government should actively pursue sustainable programmes to promote investment, create jobs and stimulate economic growth.
It appears the NCOP is using this week to tell “feel-good stories”, while residents across the West Rand would rather have the delegation address critically important matters as regards their quality of life.
To this end the DA will this week draw attention to sites that are in desperate need of intervention, such as:
- The sinkhole right next to the R500 near Carletonville, which formed as a result of water leaks from a poorly maintained water pipe;
- The leaking water reservoir in Khutsong causing residents to suffer regular water outages;
- The incomplete Droogheuwel water tower in Randgate, Randfontein, causing indefinite delays to the planned housing project nearby; and
- The tunnel project at the Donaldson Dam in Krugersdorp and cattle farming project in Westonaria, which have both failed as a result of the West Rand Development Agency’s inability to manage these projects.
Each of these have the potential to create much needed job opportunities for local residents and provide the means to learn new skills – while serving their own communities.
This will instil a sense of pride and dignity among people who will every day see the fruits of their labours build a strong and cohesive environment, where their friends, neighbours and children will enjoy the freedom to be all they can be.