16 August 2019
The burnt municipal building, service center and clinic in Stutterheim are concrete demonstrations of the underlying anger of the people of Amahlathi Local Municipality. The anger and desolation are palpable as you walk through the town, from murmurings and a few loud barks of “the municipality is finished” by locals, signify the palpability of frustrations by the residents of the municipality. The Select Committee on Cooperative Governance has visited the municipality to assess the intervention that was instituted by the provincial executive as the result of challenges in the municipality.
In her assessment of the challenges the municipality is facing, the Mayor of the municipality, Councillor Agnes Hobo, said at the centre of the problems is the political instability that has let to instability in the administration. “What was once a stable municipality, winning Vuna awards and had stable finances, is now a shadow of its glorious self. The challenges have led to dwindling prospects for investments into the municipality, which are much needed to create job opportunities,” Councillor Hobo said
Things are so bad in the municipality that they cannot afford to fix the single robot in the town. They have since started discussions with the South African National Roads Agency to fix the robot and to agree on a payment plan. But despite the challenges, the MEC of Cooperative Governance, Mr Xolile Nqatha, said there was a semblance of stability since the new political leadership. This was as a direct results of improved working relationship between the administrator and the stakeholders within the municipality.
As a result of the intervention, statutory committees were now sitting regularly and plans are afoot to ensure that regular council sittings take place, something that was not happening in the past. “The sittings in the past were only sittings, but now the administrator, together with the municipality, have put together a schedule of council sittings that councillors will participate in and make decisions,” said Mr Nqatha.
Regarding the investigations into the municipality, the MEC said he is awaiting forensic reports from the Special Investigating Unit and National Treasury, which will soon be tabled in council, and he is hopeful that once that is done, those people implicated in the plundering of the municipality will be dealt with.
The Chairperson of the committee, Mr China Dodovu, emphasised that consequence management was necessary if municipalities are to turn around and deliver on their mandates. “It is only through consequence management that challenges faced in many municipalities will be averted,” emphasised Mr Dodovu.
Wie het die vir die raadslede gestem in 2016 ? die wat hier afbrand of word hulle gehuur en gestuur om alls af te brand? Hoeveel is immigrante of burgers wat hier afbrand. Nou is daar niks oor nie en dan kerm hulle oor geen dienste wat gelewer word nie.
500 – Protesters in Stutterheim torched and destroyed more than four government buildings, including the historical town hall, one clinic, in their violent display of how unhappy they were with the service delivery they receive during their so-called non-violent actions in a so-called “democratic” country.