No crisis at NDZ Municipality, says deputy mayor

2018-07-13 06:01

THE Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma Municipality deputy mayor Philani Shange dismissed allegation that his municipality is in crisis due to poor performance and infighting among councillors.

He said that although the municipality has been placed under administration, it does not mean they are operating with a financial deficit.

The municipality was established by the merging of the Ingwe and Kwa Sani local municipalities after the August 2016 local elections.

It was placed under administration by the KZN provincial executive council led by Premier Willies Mchunu at the end of March, after it failed to make a number of executive decisions, including the appointment of senior officials and a municipal manager, due to disputes among the councillors.

Addressing the media at the Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma Municipality offices in Himeville, after presenting his state of the municipality address last Friday, the deputy mayor said the municipality is functioning well and that allegations claiming otherwise are invented by detractors.

“In January, we passed our operational budget and we did all obligations as a municipality.

“I want to assure our communities that our municipality is operating very well.

“There is no crisis and we have never been in financial distress. Our municipality is more stable than before and we are united as councillors,” said Shange.

Shange said he presented a total budget of R245 million to speed up service delivery to the communities of Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma Municipality.

“I also presented the state of the municipality address with a general analysis in specific budget.

“Although we are presenting a small budget because we rely on grants, we are trying by all means to bring service delivery to our people. We are making sure all wards under our municipality are benefiting from our budget,” he said.

With regards to the issue of land, Shange said the municipality is facing a huge problem of a shortage of land in Underberg.

“A huge amount of land in Underberg is under farmers and it is very difficult to service poor people living on farms” said Shange.

He said he hopes that once law makers pass the land expropriation without compensation law it will be easier for them to take some of the land back for poor communities.

Shange also said the municipality’s budget will also prioritise the youth.

“Each and every year we have a programmes to help young people with bursaries and other needs,” said Shange.

He said they are also busy attending to service-delivery issues raised by the local farmers’ association as well as the ratepayers’ association.

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