President Cyril Ramaphosa says effective service delivery is “vitally important” not only for local communities but also for creating a fertile environment for economic growth.
The President was speaking to a gathering of business people in Carolina, Mpumalanga, where he and a host of ministers, provincial leaders and local government leaders are expected to hold the Presidential Imbizo later today.
The Presidential Imbizo is a platform for all three spheres of government and the community to participate in a two-way engagement on the implementation of government’s programmes.
“Service delivery must come to our people so that our people…can live a better life.”
He said service delivery must be carried out by the various entities, businesses and others in the area so that they are able to create a more conducive environment for business, for investment and ultimately for job creation.
“It is vitally important that our local government structures must function effectively because… this will lead to the attraction of businesses to their areas, they will lead to jobs being created and our towns and our municipal areas thriving,” he said.
During the engagement with business, the President sought to lay out the effectiveness of government’s District Development Model (DDM) programme.
The DDM aims to step up local, provincial and national government’s coherence, cooperation and impact on service delivery with a special concentration on the country’s district and metro municipalities.
“[The DDM] enables provincial and national government to bring together our capacities, our capabilities in assisting various levels of government, particularly local government. And this is part of building a capable state [as well as] an ethical and developmental state.
“This is the centerpiece of the work that we have to do to ensure that we bring stability and capability to our state,” he said.
The President added that the DDM is an all-inclusive model which aims to bring communities closer to their local governments and to improve their lives.
“Those services are not only about water, roads and refuse removal. It’s also about enabling businesses to operate effectively and efficiently in the various districts of our country.
“When implemented effectively, the District Development Model will narrow the distance between our people and government. But it will also giver better effect to the relationship between government as well as government,” he said.
The President emphasised that municipalities are “the engine rooms” of the country’s government and they must deliver on their mandates.
“When municipalities are dysfunctional, it directly affects businesses and ultimately affects employment. When businesses are not able to get joy, good services, an enabling environment at the local government level…they take their investments elsewhere.
“When they are well run, when they give effective provision of basic services to our people, when municipal competencies like enabling economic activity to happen…then that is where we are able to grow the economy, that is when we are able to show that there is creation of jobs, reduction of poverty and elimination of inequality.
“Economic activity and growth takes place at the local government space. This is where we need to focus more of our activities,” he said.
Source: South African Government News Agency