By Janet Semple MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Economic Development:
The DA notes the move by Gauteng Economic Development MEC, Lebogang Maile, to root out corruption in the Gauteng Enterprise Propeller (GEP) which has nearly bankrupted the entity, but recommends a re-evaluation of its entrepreneur programme.
According to MEC Maile, GEP has only R30 million left for this financial year, which it still has to use to run operations and pay employees.
The entity, which has been in existence since 2005, is owed R100 million in unpaid loans.
What is becoming increasingly apparent is that the laissez-faire approach to providing loans to entrepreneurs is no longer viable.
The DA recommends that tight controls be put in place before loans are given, and that tight credit control is exercised over repayments.
However, what emerging entrepreneurs mostly need is mentorship from industry experts, for without practical application and knowledgeable insight, these loans will not be utilised effectively.