Tackle service delivery, urges Salga

2012-08-01 21:26
A protester is seen during a demonstration over service delivery. (File, Sapa)

A protester is seen during a demonstration over service delivery. (File, Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The government's focus should be on improving services at local government level, the SA Local Government Association (Salga) said on Wednesday.

"Local government is where [the] government should be focusing its capacity and resources," CEO Xolile George said in a statement.

"Local government is not in a state of collapse, but the challenges that this sphere of government faces are very real because it is [at] the coal-face of delivery."

Marking the beginning of local government week, George said authorities should act and not just ask questions.

Salga called on the National Council of Provinces to bring problems facing citizens to Parliament.

"Service delivery is a national priority and all spheres of government should gather around the real issues, and start working towards improving and accelerating service delivery at a local level.

"As we seek to confront and adequately address the challenges that hinder municipalities from delivering on their developmental mandate... we must bear in mind that the nation needs tangible outcomes."

Areas of concern that needed to be discussed included building local government capacity, stimulating local economic development and rural development, and creating sustainable financial systems.

"Local government revenue generation is at risk," George said.

"Various national and provincial policy and legislative developments and, in some instances, the lack thereof, are progressively constraining the ability of municipalities to collect revenue."

He said trends, good practices and problems in revenue collection also needed to be discussed.

"When local government week is over we want to be able to assure our communities that change is truly on the way -- and they must see visible change," George said.

- SAPA
Read more on:    xolile george  |  service delivery  |  local government
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