Mtubatuba municipality commit to spend 50% of their budget on women
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The rural municipality of Mtubatuba, in the north of KwaZulu-Natal is aiming to spend at least 50% of its local economic development budget on women, who have been "key" for the survival of the small town.
This was revealed by Vincent Ncamphalala, the Mayor of Inkosi Mtubatuba as he concluded series of activities to celebrate women on Tuesday.
Located along the coast, Mtubatuba is among the province's tourism attractions with St Lucia beaches, Simangaliso Wetlands Park and Mfolozi Game Reserve as drawcard.
However, the municipality remains the poorest with a high level of unemployment.
It depended solely on government grants for survival, but it has the potential to grow given the tourist attractions such as Imfolozi Game Reserve, said Ncamphalala.
Addressing delegates, Ncamphalala said women had played a critical role in the local development, particularly, selling fresh produce and art and craft items to tourists.
Closing the woman month, the municipality hosted women in the business symposium to share knowledge and skills to equip women.
Ncamphalala said the municipality would be assisting local women by procuring from them whatever produce may be used by the municipality.
“We are committed to prioritising women development especially in areas where they were deprived of opportunities. We all have stories about incredible women in our lives, So, I would not be proud as the mayor to fail them while I was also raised by a woman under difficult circumstances. Going forward as the municipality we will strive for equal opportunities and empowerment between men and women of Mtubatuba.
We have the responsibility to uplift women in business and others that can assist our communities. We will use the women database information that we have collected throughout the month to implement our visions going forward,” he said.
The municipality had invited various stakeholders in the business community including KZN Liquor Authority, national youth development agency, Ithala Bank and department of agriculture among others.
Hlengiwe Mavimbela, MEC for Art Culture and Sport and Recreation who was among the attendees said she was thrilled by the effort made by the municipality to assist women in rural areas. She pledged support saying the department would assist by ensuring that women get access to the market especially those who were doing art.