2018-06-22 06:00

DEAR reader, welcome once again to our weekly update column. We are now in the last quarter of the 2017 – 2018 financial year. As the Matatiele Local Municipality, we are proud to have recorded tangible success, this in spite of many challenges we still face in our quest to make the lives of the people of Sweet Matat sweeter.


The Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature will, from June 18 to June 20, host a three day Commonwealth Women Parliament Dialogue in Matatiele. There will be a build up to the main event on the June 18 – members of the public are hereby advised that there will be services on wheels, with departments such as Home Affairs, Social Development, SASSA, Health, Department of Economic Development, Environmental Affairs & Tourism, Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform, Department of Human Settlements and SAPS at Maluti Civic Centre from 9 am to 4 pm. Applications for identity documents and other Home Affairs related documents will be made on the day. SASSA will assist beneficiaries with new cards. Bring all necessary supporting documents in order to be assisted.

The deputy chairperson of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Africa region and the deputy chairperson of committees in Parliament, Ms Thoko Didiza, will give a keynote address under the theme “Women at the centre of radical economic transformation”.

The objectives of the dialogue are, amongst others, to expand accountability by the leadership across the spectrum on women representation, to mobilise active participation of women in government programmes, to critically interrogate involvement of women in the Africa agenda 2063 and sustainable development goals with a view to mainstream gender in the budgetary process, policy planning and implementation as well as ensuring inclusive development. The dialogue is also aimed at raising awareness and debate towards the emancipation of women and representation of women in leadership.

Some of the participants identified for the session are members of Parliament and national ministers; chairperson of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Ms Lindiwe Maseko, MPLs from Parliament and other legislatures, councillors from municipalities in Alfred Nzo District, civic society organisations; academic institutions; business fraternity, student organisations, traditional leaders; government institutions, and Africa diaspora. The Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians is an organ established by the Constitution of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association - Africa Region. It was founded in 1989 with the objective of increasing the number of women representatives in Parliaments and legislatures across the Commonwealth countries. It also ensures that women issues are brought to the fore during parliamentary debates and oversight processes.

We are happy, as the local municipality, to host an event of this calibre as it will boost our local economy in terms of accommodation establishments, filling stations and catering companies. We welcome them in Matatiele. For further deliberations of this August event, tune into Alfred Nzo Community and follow our social media platforms through Facebook or you can also get yourself a copy of Fever publication next week.


We come once more in Youth Month - June 16, the day that we all stand up to honour the spirit of young martyrs who laid down their lives so that the youth may be free today. Government is certainly aware of the challenges that youth faces, i.e. unemployment, HIV/AIDS, youth involved in crime, poverty and, whilst these challenges might be different from those experienced by the youth of 1976, today’s youth is still expected to offer their hands in volunteering to rebuild their communities.

This demands that the youth seizes the opportunities brought about by democracy and work both with Government and the private sector to uplift themselves from poverty, ignorance and lack of skills. Let us celebrate this day, remembering the deaths of hundreds of Soweto schoolchildren, a day that changed the course of the South African history: June 16, 1976.

“We are a Destination of Choice and Excellence.”


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