Dysfunctional councils may be taken over

2012-04-24 17:32

Cape Town - Municipalities that are not functioning properly could well be incorporated into those that are, President Jacob Zuma suggested on Tuesday.

Responding to questions in the National Council of Provinces (NCOP), he told members that the cooperative governance and traditional affairs department, together with the National Treasury, was surveying municipalities in all provinces and preparing recommendations.

“What... we cannot continue doing is to close our eyes to realities; there are municipalities that are non-viable, which therefore cannot do what is expected of them,” Zuma said. A “remedy” was needed.

“Should we retain them? Do we have the finances to pump in to make them viable? Or, do we do something else?"

Zuma declined to predict the outcome of the survey, which was initiated by the Presidential Coordinating Council, but said a lot of work was being done to arrive at a decision.

“We are going to work very hard and whatever decision we come to, (then) we have taken the decision.

“Because it is not, to me, the boundaries that are important. I think boundaries are done mainly for administration, though at times people in this country take them as political, hard borders.

"They are done to ease the work of administration.

“Now, if those municipalities cannot exist on their own, we’ll have to decide, all of us, do we either incorporate them into others... or put in more money (to support them).”

“We will need to take a collective decision.

“What we cannot continue to do is to remain with non-viable municipalities. It’s not logical,” Zuma said.

Responding to a separate question later, he reminded members that South Africa was a unitary state, and its provincial borders were merely administrative boundaries.

“I know that at times, when people look at the provincial boundaries, they think provinces are countries. They are not... They were meant to make it easy for the administration of the country,” he said.

The president’s appearance in the NCOP on Tuesday marks the first time a president has come before it to answer questions.

  • Squeegee - 2012-04-24 17:43

    What about a dysfunctional president?

      Rejeanne - 2012-04-24 18:05

      What about the dysfunctional ANC councils surrounding the DA councils? Will Jacob incorporate them into the DA councils? Like maybe incorporate the entire Eastern Cape into the Western Cape?

      Zahir - 2012-04-24 20:06

      If for example 100 anc councils that do not work and u combine them into 10 mega councils u just hide the problem but the problem is solved zooma?

  • Toofaan - 2012-04-24 17:47

    “Now, if those municipalities cannot exist on their own, we’ll have to decide, all of us, do we either incorporate them into others... or put in more money (to support them).” OK - I know I'm not the sharpest guy around (so pls don't just shoot me down), but does this not mean that we all could be part to Cape Town ?

  • Peter - 2012-04-24 17:48

    So the entire Eastern Cape, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Free State, Northwest and large parts of KZN will have to be incorporated into fully functional Western Cape municipalities

      Jason - 2012-04-24 17:55

      It's actually unbelieable how many people are moving to the Western Cape. From Cape Town to Plett. I think George is also the fastest growing town in the country. The E-tolls are just going to make things worse, not because of the money but that another freedom is being taken away. OFC it's all to do with money that's why Gauteng got it 1st. KZN will be next.

  • Liam - 2012-04-24 17:51

    that's not a bad idea Mr. President. well done! now to accurately identify efficiently operated municipalities.

  • Piet - 2012-04-24 17:54

    Are you going to fire the incompetent cadres that is responsible for this mess? I think not.....u are spineless!!!!

  • bluzulu - 2012-04-24 17:56

    Mr. President, Just install better people to key positions. We are out here.....The People are waiting.

      Nigel - 2012-04-24 18:13

      yup & they will continue to wait & wait & wait

  • TheMonk Za - 2012-04-24 17:57

    Simply means that there will be no municipalities left.

      Nigel - 2012-04-24 18:11

      yea there will be one for a while (other than those in the WC), till that is mismanaged as well.

  • Nigel - 2012-04-24 18:09

    Limpopo & the EC may as well be separate countries the way their education is going.

  • Dianne - 2012-04-24 18:10

    Then Merafong (Carletonville) should be taken over NOW! Council doing nothing here. Cant even cut the grass/weeds on the pavements.

  • Lotus - 2012-04-24 18:17

    It is not a shortage of money mr president,it is the sheer incompetence and laundering happening. Fire and hire new people, regardless of their political views.

  • Thabo - 2012-04-24 18:39

    What makes a council dysfunctional ? I believe it is a lack of good management and right skilled people. In mathematics, addition of two numbers with two different signs, the answer takes the sign of a bigger number. Meaning, non performing council of 20 people plus a performing council of 10 people will not work. Performing council will be negatively affected by a non performing council. Solution: evaluate the skills, posts and then address the problem of the unskilled, clueless.

      bluzulu - 2012-04-24 19:34


  • Mike Purchase - 2012-04-24 19:15

    What is the oke smoking is he going to incorporate all his rotten munics into cape town.

  • aiazmir - 2012-04-24 20:06

    what makes it ominous for me is his statement, "I think boundaries are done mainly for administration, though at times people in this country take them as political, hard borders." This is a veiled threat to the DA-led Western Cape. "Let's combine the East, North and Western Cape." he may say later, making these territories ANC. Well, Mr President, I have news for you, those people will not want to vote ANC after the way the ANC has treated them. You may just end up with a far more powerful opposition. This decision would also be harmfully disrespectful to your grand aspirations.

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