KZN rolls out phase two of EPWP

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Pietemaritzburg - The second phase of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) has been rolled out in KwaZulu-Natal, following the success of phase one in the province.

Minister of Public Works Geoff Doidge, together with Premier Zweli Mkhize, on Wednesday signed an Implementation Protocol Agreement for the roll out of phase two of the EPWP in the province.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Minister Doidge highlighted the importance of the implementation protocol and emphasised the cabinet's accountability to the people of the province.

"The roll out of the EPWP phase two, as well as the reporting of its progress, will give us an indication of how far we are truly in addressing the challenges faced by our people and acting on the mandate we are given following the national government elections in April this year," said Mr Doidge.

The provincial Department of Transport had done well in the first phase of the EPWP by exceeding the target that was set by government by creating 32 384 jobs.

"As the government we set a target of creating 500 000 job opportunities by December this year.

"With the province's previous performance we are certain that will meet the target of creating 500 000 job opportunities by the end of the year," said Minister Doidge.

MEC for Transport, Willies Mchunu, assured that his department would do their best to meet or exceed the target in the second phase.

"This is a race against time. Our people have waited for far too long. Now is the opportune time to accelerate delivery through the EPWP," said MEC Mchunu.

Premier Mkhize reaffirmed that his cabinet would achieve the targets set by the government. "We will make sure that this programme is rolled out in all the municipalities, especially in the rural areas," he said.

The purpose of the implementation protocol, which all the provincial premier's are required to sign, is amongst others, to establish an agreed framework for cooperation and coordination between the National Department of Public Works and the province.