EThekwini municipality says it welcomes support as long as it benefits residents

Durban City Hall. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Durban City Hall. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jun 28, 2024


THE eThekwini Municipality said it welcomes support from other spheres of government as long as the support is for the benefit of the people of eThekwini. This is after the Department of Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) MEC Thulasizwe Buthelezi, yesterday introduced Dr Mike Sutcliffe and Dr Cassius Lubisi as the two governance experts appointed by Cogta under section 154 to lead the intervention in eThekwini. The intervention is aimed at resuscitating the Metro.

Buthelezi said the team will operate for a year starting from 1 July 2024. “We aim to restore eThekwini to its former status as the jewel in the crown of KwaZulu-Natal,” he said. The team would have to provide monthly reports to the MEC.

In a statement by the City, it said it has been supported on an ongoing basis for several years by the National Treasury City Support Programme since around 2015 and currently by the presidential eThekwini Working Group with turnaround plans being implemented and monitored through workstream meetings with significant progress being reported against the plans.

“The Presidential Working Group was established to support and accelerate efforts by the municipality to improve service delivery, improve business confidence, and reposition eThekwini as an investment and tourism hotspot,” read the statement.

Moreover, the City said the Presidential Working Group represents an intergovernmental collaborative approach to addressing challenges in local government and includes active participation from all levels of government, the private sector, state-owned enterprises, organised labour, and civil society.

This group is said to play a crucial role in monitoring the progress of the implemented action plans. Regular assessments and feedback mechanisms ensure that any challenges are promptly addressed and that the municipality remains on track toward sustained improvement.

“EThekwini Council will engage further on KZN Cogta’s support to ensure that there is alignment with the Presidential eThekwini Working Group and other support programmes such as the City support program from the National Treasury,” read the statement.

The strategic support under section 154 will entail:

• Building a clean, effective, efficient responsive, and accountable local government.

• Implementation of findings of investigation reports.

• Addressing non-compliance with terms and conditions, including poor spending on allocated grants for various projects.

• Strengthening partnerships between communities’ civil society, the business sector, and other critical role-players to restore public and investor confidence.

Independent on Saturday