Local government celebrations begin

2016-05-12 06:00

THIS year marks 16 years of a democratic local government in South Africa where all municipalities in KwaZulu-Natal will reflect on the road travelled towards creating a better life for all citizens through provision of service delivery over the years.

Ugu District Municipality and its family of local municipalities mark a momentous milestone as they mirror on the 16-year journey of local government and its successes through the 16 years of local government celebrations launched in Umuziwabantu Municipality on Tuesday.

Ugu district hosts with pride the launch of this magnitude also encouraged by the fact that our district has recorded the most number of clean audits among its local municipalities for the 2014/15 financial year. This pleasing achievement has placed Ugu district as the best performing district in the province.

The week-long celebrations will include showcasing and communicating achievements of the democratic government over the past 16 years by carrying the celebration flame along all the six local municipalities in the district.

It is 21 years since the advent of democracy and 16 years into the operation of an entirely new local government dispensation. It is also worth mentioning that local government has not only survived a fundamental restructuring over the past 16 years, but has also made great strides towards extending service delivery and development to marginalised communities.

In 16 years local government has emerged from being an institution that was subservient and illegitimate to an institution with democratically elected leadership that has constitutional status and a developmental agenda. On the other hand, as expectations of local government service delivery have risen, it has also become evident that the broader transformation of local government is by no means complete. Noticeable progress has been made in improving the lives of our communities since the establishment of local government.

Our task, going forward, is to work tirelessly in addressing the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality. It is for this reason that as part of the celebrations of 16 years of democratic local government and beyond we will be mobilising our communities behind the national development plan, Vision 2030, as our collective response to the challenges faced by the communities.

Celebrations in the local municipalities:

Ezinqoleni Municipality: 13 May

Hibiscus Coast Municipality: 14 May

Umzumbe Municipality: 15 May

Umdoni Municipality: 16 May

Vulamehlo Municipality: 17 May

These celebrations will also seek to mobilise communities, government departments and agencies, organised labour, business, civil society, the media, faith-based organizations and the academic fraternity in the realisation of 16 years of local democratic government development towards the attainment of the noble principle of “people shall govern”.

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