Chairperson, the clause in the Local Government: Municipal Structures Act that requires a municipal manager to have the relevant qualifications and expertise to perform the duties associated with the post is seemingly ignored in most cases.
While we welcome the regulations recently promulgated to control the appointment of senior municipal staff, the continued waiving of the requirements and extension of the timeframe for these officials to become qualified sends a shameful message that we condone and accept mediocrity in government. Yesterday we learned that the municipal manager of Mbhashe Municipality in the Eastern Cape has resigned, making him the 6th municipal manager to leave that municipality in just three years! This municipality can at best be described as dysfunctional.
The second group of fat cats we need to get rid of are the tenderpreneurs gnawing on the carcasses of our municipalities. Here, Minister, it is critical that transparent, equitable and efficient supply chain management processes are implemented. Open these deals up and let the sun shine in! The more the deals are done in back rooms behind closed doors, the more likely they are to be nepotistic, fraudulent or irregular.
The issues facing local government are not new, or startling. They arise from our divided past, as much as they do from our dysfunctional present. Yes, there are enormous backlogs in service delivery. Yes, we need to build infrastructure to provide those who were disadvantaged under apartheid with access to roads, water, and sanitation. Yes, we must provide housing and refuse collection and health services to all segments of society. Thank you. [Time expired.] [Applause.]