Govt to scrutinise municipalities 'one by one': Baloyi

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Giyani - Next year government will assess the performance of municipalities and their ability to deliver services, warned Minister for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Richard Baloyi.

He was speaking on behalf of President Jacob Zuma who was unable to attend the Muhlava Day festivities in Nkowankowa outside Tzaneen, Limpopo, on Saturday.

Baloyi said municipalities would be scrutinised "one by one". "We'll also look at the challenges facing the municipalities to see whether the support that we give (them) as provincial and national government is enough to help them overcome challenges that they face," he said.

Baloyi acknowledged that sometimes the support from provincial government did not equal to the challenges municipalities face.

He said that with immediate effect, his department will determine which municipalities have dismissed their municipal managers and not replaced them.

"We have also noted that in some areas it has become fashionable to remove municipal managers from their positions and not replace them...the same with councillors and other leaders," he said, adding that this was not the kind of governance that was desired.

"Take it from me, by the end of this month we'll know which province takes a lead position in terms of removing leaders from their positions, and also, what kind of medicine they need to be cured from that tendency," he said.

Baloyi added that the government was on a mission to identify the top ten corrupt municipalities in each province.

He appealed to communities to take part in the process by notifying the government about corruption in their municipalities. 

Meanwhile, local traditional leader, Hosi Muhlava II, appealed to government to increase the salaries of traditional leaders.

"We're earn less than the councillors....we don't even have enough to (educate) our kids after matric," he said. Baloyi promised to look at the matter during the budget process next year.

The minister also stressed that the government was doing its best to address the issue of chieftaincy claim, but that many claims were invalid.

"We've about 2 000 cases left to deal with, but I must tell you that I doubt that we'll approve more than five percent of them, because most of these claims are not valid. "I'm not saying you should not claim, but this is the situation that we're facing as government," he said. 

Muhlava Day is an annual celebration hosted by the Royal Council of the Nkuna Tribal Authority in Nkowankowa to celebrate their history, and heritage. -