MEC’s cutting of NGO budgets will lead to starvation

2009-09-17 13:12

The Eastern Cape cabinet is really a disgrace when it comes to

governance by the various MECs. I was puzzled when I heard during a news

bulletin on Umhlobo Wenene FM recently that social development MEC Nonkosi Mvana

has cut the budget for NGOs, with special mention of an NGO that supports

“needy” children in East London.

When questioned as to the reasons for the cut, she replied that the

focus is now on rural development.

What a stupid answer!

She fails to recognise that the paradigm shift towards rural

development mainly concerns major economic institutions – such as the provincial

treasury as well as finance and economic development departments – because these

are the major roleplayers who also pump funds into other departments.

This did not require her less economic and fully social department

to take the drastic, senseless and ruthless action of cutting budgets and, in so

doing, starving young children in the name of rural development.

Her mandate is to support the “needy” wherever they are. I mean

would it be fair or logical to say books must not be supplied to township

students now because the focus is on rural development?

She has started her career as a “senior politician” with an

embarrassing mentality. I personally question her intellectual capacity and

diplomacy to synergise and synchronise issues.

Mvana was supposed to instead increase the budgets of these NGOs

and encourage them to widen their scope by opening satellites in rural areas. It

is logical to use the existing developmental entities to develop their rural

community counterparts, and employ a model for training, mentorship and

reporting – not to starve them.

An NGO is a vehicle to speed up delivery. We appeal to other MECs

in other departments not to follow Mvana’s abnormal behaviour.

Zixolisile Headman Mngxaso,
King William’s Town

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