Emfuleni mayor backs Midvaal merger

2012-11-27 20:52
Gauteng provincial government (Picture: Sapa)

Gauteng provincial government (Picture: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The executive mayor of Emfuleni has defended the proposed merger between her region and Midvaal because it would create a single authority, to the benefit of the area.

"The benefits of a single authority are immense and far outweigh risks," executive Mayor Greta Hlongwane said in a statement on Tuesday.

She said the Midvaal region had the potential to become an important hub for growth in Gauteng in the coming years.

The proposed merger was first announced earlier this month by the Municipal Demarcation Board.

It has been criticised by the Democratic Alliance, which leads the Midvaal municipality.

The DA said it would create added expense and would adversely affect service delivery.

The party also said the planned merger was intended to serve the ANC, as Midvaal was the only DA-run municipality in Gauteng.

Hlongwane rejected the criticisms.

"We have noted some negative comments which intend to scare residents from supporting the establishment of a metropolitan municipality comprising these two municipalities," she said.

She said a merger would create a bigger "economy of scale" and improve services by making them more efficient and reducing bureaucracy.

"Clearly, there are many benefits associated with an establishment of a metro which include among others: economies of scale by having a bigger and single authority within the Vaal Triangle area; improved services as a results of removing duplications, a much more efficient and effective administration by cutting bureaucratic red-tape," Hlongwane said.

No decision has been made by the demarcation board on the proposed merger.

Four hearings will take place this week and next week in Greater Evaton, Greater Sebokeng, Vereeniging and Boitshepiville, and Vanderbiljpark and Bophelong.

The hearings will give members of the public the opportunity to voice their opinions on the merger.

- SAPA
Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  johannesburg  |  politics
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