The recent visit by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) to the Pixley ka Seme District Municipality in the Northern Cape painted a grim picture of the situation as experienced by ordinary citizens in terms of service delivery by government and municipalities.
Responses by officials of the departments indicated that serious challenges exist in terms of the establishment of sustainable communities to address poverty and unemployment. What Members of Parliament were exposed to in Colesberg, Noupoort, Hopetown, Victoria West, Richmond, Britstown and Strydenburg in terms of critical shortages of water supply and electricity, vandalized houses, dysfunctional agricultural and economic development projects, school books not delivered, shortages of teachers and staff were nothing less than critical. The visit by MP’s and officials of departments confirms that local municipalities are imploding and are to a great degree dysfunctional. Serious challenges also exist in terms of integrated planning by departments and the support that the department of Agriculture is providing to emerging farmers.
The reasons for the collapsed in service delivery in this District Municipality can primarily be linked to inefficient and unproductive officials that were deployed by the ANC to positions that they are not fit and qualified to occupy. As long as this phenomenon prevails, ordinary citizens will continue to suffer.
The Congress of People (COPE) trusts that the pending visit by President Zuma and ministers during November 2011 as part of the “Parliament to the People” program will address some of the challenges and concerns. If not, communities will continue to go backward and remain impoverished, poor and marginalised.