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Report card for Western Cape Government

14 December 2011, 14:10
By Jody Hendricks

On Monday the DA released their annual score card for President Zuma and National Government Ministers. As a part-time journalist and full-time Cape Tonian I thought it would just be fair to rate the performance of the Western Cape Provincial Government for the work they’ve done in the past 12 months.

The Province has a lot of good, bad and ugly to deal with but there are some issues that need to be addressed at once. Crime, health, education and economic development are all failing the people in the Province.

Certain communities the Western Cape have a higher TB rate and areas in Zimbabwe, take note Theuns Botha. The World famous Cape Winelands contributes a lot towards tourism and the economy of the Province but there are still far too many reported cases of farm workers being exploited and abused by farmers as well as several reported cases about the “dop system” being used as a form of payment. Shame on you Gerrit van Rensburg, MEC for Agriculture for allowing this to happen.

The Western Cape has a lot of potential but the political, economic and social system is slowly starting to fail the people in the Province. Premier Helen Zille needs to address these issues and find a sustainable solution if she wishes to stay in power in 2014.

Premier Helen Zille gets a C for Clever but not Cool
Helen Zille had a busy 2011. Not only is she Premier of the Western Cape, Leader of the Opposition and cheerleader for Lindiwe Mazibuko. As Premier, Zille rules the Province with an iron fist… “Godzille” as she is affectionately known to her political opponents have done an “OK” job of running the Province, but can still do lots more… The Majority of the people in the Province still lives below the bread line and their quality of life have not improved in the last year. The Premier seriously needs to address issues like crime, health and unemployment in 2012. Zille will have to start showing the people of the Western Cape that her government has a workable plan to deal with the above mentioned issues. An integrated community is also needed as too many areas in the Province are still segregated around racial lines.

Anton Bredell, MEC for Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Donald Grant, Education MEC, Bonginkosi Madikizela, MEC for Human Settlements, Ivan Meyer, MEC for Cultural Affairs and Sport, Gerrit van Rensburg, MEC for Agriculture, Theuns Botha, MEC for Health and all get a D for Do more.

While Alan Winde, MEC for Finance, Economic Development and Tourism gets a B for Better than expected. In tough economic times he has managed to keep the Western Cape a preferred destination for international visitors (sometimes at the expense of locals.) Cape Town has been named World Design Capital for 2014 and Table Mountain voted as one of the seven natural wonders of the World. Achievements like that will boost the tourism and economic sectors in the Western Cape and he deserves some credit for that.

Robin Carlisle, MEC for Transport and Public Works gets an F for Failure
Road safety in the Western Cape is a serious problem. In high profile cases MEC Carlisle will be the first on the scene, promising the media and those affected that his department will do everything in its power to ensure something similar does not happen again. “ Buttskop taxi-train crash and Knysna Bus accident cases in point” To date very little has been done at the Buttskop level crossing despite 10 kids being killed there last year… Carlise is not doing enough to make the roads safer and to minimize the number of road deaths in the province. He should resign or be fired by the Premier as he has a poor track record and the number of road deaths that has happened on his clock totally unacceptable.

Dan Plato, MEC for Community Safety gets a G for Go
The former mayor of Cape Town should be held responsible for all the senseless killings in the Province. Crime is a serious problem in our Province and Plato does not have the ability to deal with it. Our townships are among the most dangerous and deadly in the world. Even former Springbok Flank Solly Tyibilika was the victim of a senseless murder in the Province. In Lavender Hill and Hanover Park gangsters are killing innocent people and selling drugs to school kids. What does the MEC do? He hands out pamphlets asking gangsters to stop the killings. He has also been unable to get a specialized gang unit to investigate gang activity in the province, instead he asked National Police Minister, Nathi Mthethwa to solve the problem. The community safety portfolio needs someone who can take control of the crime situation in the Province and sadly Dan Plato is that that person.

Jody Hendricks is a Freelance Journalist/Writer/Blogger

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