Johannesburg - Health and education will be the focus of
Gauteng's infrastructure development programme to create jobs, the provincial
government said on Monday.
Infrastructure development MEC Bheki Nkosi said there was a
lot of ageing infrastructure in the province, of which Chris Hani Baragwanath
Hospital was a prime example.
"Baragwanath needs a big injection," he told
reporters in Johannesburg.
"We are doing our best to bring its infrastructure to
functional level. It is a process that is already under way, with the reception
and casualty areas already revamped and at a world class level."
The provincial department of infrastructure, which falls
under the umbrella of the Expanded Public Works Programme, drives job creation
in the province.
Nkosi said this was happening largely through skills
development and giving young people work experience.
The province aims to create 500 000 jobs that would improve
the skills of workers, giving them a shot at entering the private sector.
The department has already embarked on an extensive infrastructure
renewal programme in all provincial hospitals.
It included upgrading laundries, individual wards,
electricity reticulation and forensic services. Other projects in the pipeline
focus on the youth.
Nkosi said 121 small to medium enterprise contractors would
benefit from the contractor incubation programme.
"We are also giving specific attention to the
procurement processes within the department, to ensure the irregular expenditure
incurred by the department in the 2009/10 and 2010/11 financial years are
further minimised," he said.