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SMME development is paramount - Cope

Feb 20 2013 19:44 Sapa

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Bloemfontein - Free State premier Ace Magashule must give practical plans for local economic development in his state of the province speech, opposition parties in the province said on Wednesday.

Magashule will deliver the state of the province address in Bloemfontein on Thursday.

"[Small, medium and micro-enterprise] SMME development and job creation are paramount," said the Congress of the People's Free State legislature leader, Casca Mokitlane.

He said small business development in the province had been sidelined in recent years. "Support is small."

He said the Free State would not realise its dreams for economic development if there was not more support for SMMEs.

Democratic Alliance caucus leader Roy Jankielsohn agreed that it was important to grow the provincial economy by creating opportunities in agriculture, manufacturing and tourism.

He said the Free State should create opportunities for people to become entrepreneurs so they could enter the formal economy.

Other related issues, such as infrastructure, education, healthcare and crime and corruption, also needed attention.

Both opposition parties said Magashule should pay attention to the province's top leader structures.

"Every Friday, responsibility in the top echelons changes," said Mokitlane. This happened both at provincial and municipal government levels.

He said leaders had no time to work and finish issues affecting communities before they were re-deployed.

"This is not serving government properly."

Jankielsohn said cadre deployments had contributed the most to the impotence of administrations at provincial and local government levels.

"The cadre deployment has filled our bureaucracies with many senior civil servants, whose loyalty is political and not service delivery orientated."

He said appointments made on political instead of skills criteria had stripped bureaucracies of capacity and had destroyed incentives for skilled and professional civil servants to excel.

"Factionalism at political level has also manifested itself into bureaucracies and has had a devastating impact on work ethic and morale," he said.

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ace magashule  |  free state  |  jobs  |  smmes
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