Abantu basoPhongolo bakhulume kwezwakala futhi kwakhanyela wonke umuntu ukuthi bafuna abaholi boMkhandlu wasoPhongolo abathembakele nabagcina izethembiso zabo kubantu.
We as a collective shall change the lives of the people of uPhongolo Local Municipality for the better. The delivery of quality municipal services to all its people in every municipal wards under uPhongolo Municipality. We understand challenges faced by our people, particularly the youth, women and people with disability. Through partnership with traditional leadership, provincial, national government department we will address unemployment, gender based violence, poverty and inequality.
Through honesty, accountability and transparency, our municipality will deliver quality services to all. I urge all municipal employees to work tirelessly to change the lives for our communities.
The year 2022 will bring better opportunities for all citizens under this leadership. Sethembe !!!!!
The mandate of uPhongolo Municipality is not unique to the broader mandate given to Local Government by the South African Constitution, Chapter 7. The only uniqueness we have is the difference in the legitimate expectations of our citizenry. Our resolve is based on serving our communities wherever they live.
We pledge that in these five years that we have been given by the electorate they will be spent fruitfully for the benefit of all our people. We are here in the Council carrying clear mandates of our constituencies and of our communities at large. We are aware that we have been sworn in office after the IDP’s, Budget and Performance Management of the 2021/2022 financial year had already been approved.
We present to you the last IDP of the 5th generation of the Integrated Development Plan (IDP’s), subsequent to the last local government elections held on 1st November 2021. The Council of uPhongolo Municipality held its strategic planning session on 16th to 18th February 2022 to look at performance highlights of the previous and current year (implementation of the approved IDP), its challenges and intervention areas, internal and external environmental analysis, confirmation of the vision, mission, core values, goals and strategic objectives in an endeavour to achieve alignment and compliance with the relevant government policies and priorities. It is with great pleasure that I embrace the opportunity to report on the progress in respect of what we pledge to deliver for the community of uPhongolo Municipality in the next 5-year period going forward. To start with, the IDP reported about 6 Key Performance Areas namely:
- Municipal Transformation and Institutional Development;
- Basic Service Delivery and Institutional Development;
- Municipal Financial Viability and Management;
- Social and Economic Development;
- Good Governance and Public Participation; and
- Cross Cutting Interventions (Provincial KPA).
The aforementioned KPAs have goals, strategic objectives and are in line with the programmes and projects which we have the intention to implement over the next 5-year period in our endeavour to address the three main challenges which are: poverty alleviation, unemployment and inequality. In the circumstances, I wish to reiterate my genuine pleasure as I move on to report on the said KPAs.
Municipal Transformation and Institutional Development:
One critical aspect with regard to the Municipal Transformation and Institutional Development has been a need to fill critical positions within the uPhongolo Municipality for the following positions:
- Municipal Manager
- Chief Financial Officer
- Director: Technical Services
- Director: Corporate Services
Currently, the municipality has filled the position of the Municipal Manager: MB Khali. The CFO, Technical and Corporate Services positions shall be filled in July 2022 and the recruitment process has already been started.
The municipality has started the recruitment process and these critical positions will be filled by July 2022. The following strategies will be developed and reported on progress in terms of implementation:
- Review of an 2022/2023 Organogram that would respond to the needs of the municipal functionality and effectiveness;
- Critical labour structures within the municipality have been established and are operational (LLF, Training Committees);
- Review of uPhongolo Municipality Human Resource Management, Strategy and 5-year Implementation Plan. The purpose of this HRM & HRD Strategy and Implementation Plan is to outline key interventions that are to be undertaken by the municipality in ensuring that it has the right number of people, with the right composition and with the right competencies, in the right places to enable it to deliver on the mandates and achieve its strategic goals and objectives;
- Review of Employment Equity Policy and Plan. The purpose of this policy is to continuously create an environment that permits equal opportunity for advancement, in order to redress the past imbalances and to ameliorate the conditions of individuals and groups who have been previously disadvantaged on the grounds of race, gender and disability;
- Review of Human Resources Policies;
- Review of Organisational PMS Policy Framework;
- Employee and Councillor Training as per the Council approved Workplace Skills Plan; and
- Implementation of the Batho Pele Policy
- Implementation of Fleet Management Policy
Basic Service Delivery and Infrastructure Development:
Basic Service Delivery and Infrastructure Development has been highly dependent on grant funding for the past few years. We are pleased to report 100% expenditure in all projects that were implemented through MIG during 2021/2022.
Municipal Financial Viability and Management:
Financial sustainability is highly dependent on collection of rates and service charges. Financial sustainability has improved drastically and, thus, the municipality has been able to fast-track service delivery. The collection of rates has improved and is expected to further improve in the next financial years. The cash flow status of the municipality is positive. Areas of improvement are listed below.
- The need for the development and implementation of policies pertaining to the Radical Economic Transformation;
- Improvement of Debt Collection Strategy
- Review and implementation of uPhongolo Municipality Revenue Enhancement Strategy
- Development of Departmental Procurement Plans
During the 2021/2022 financial year, the municipality obtained an Unqualified Audit Opinion, which should give confidence to the communities and council as this is an indication that the financial status of the municipality has been reported fairly.
The Municipality has benefitted from the National Treasury Programme, (MFMA). Through this internship programme coupled with grant funding and the aim of the programme is to build capacity within the finance department.
Local Economic Development:
- uPhongolo Municipality has been identified as a tourist destination and hosted several LED/Tourism and Investments Information Sessions where major businesses and stakeholders were invited to participate.
- Establishment of Public Private Partnership and working relationships with the business communities;
- Local Economic Development Strategy reviewed and being implemented
Council approved Agricultural Plan and is being implemented;
- Implementation of LED Policies and By-laws (EPWP,SMME/ Informal Trading, Vendor and Street Trading)
- Municipality has prioritized industrial development as a strategy to create jobs in manufacturing and agro-processing.
- Municipality has strengthened its partnership with different departments including Edtea through Moses Kotane institute to promote forth industrial revolution through digital centres.
Good Governance and Public Participation:
- The following Council structures have been established and are fully functional:
- Community Services Portfolio Committee;
- Technical Services Portfolio Committee;
- Finance Portfolio Committee;
- Corporate Services Portfolio Committee;
- LED and Planning Portfolio Committee;
- The Audit Committee meet as scheduled;
- Ward Committees and they submit reports monthly; and
- War Rooms and ward 7 took position 3 in Provincial Premiers Excellence Awards.
In line with the provisions of the Municipal Systems Act of 2000, the IDP has been developed accordingly to reflect the current community needs as obtained through the Public Participation Process held between October 2021 and March 2022. For ease of reference, a report is attached-reflecting the Ward Community Needs. The most fundamental responsibilities are underlined by our oversight in the municipal programmes and activities as follows:
- To ensure the functionality of Council and Council Committees;
- To ensure the implementation of resolution register;
- To ensure a high level of oversight role in Council Programmes;
- Development, Review and implementation of policies and by-laws;
- To ensure the functional of the Internal and Audit and Performance Committee;
- Review of Community Participation Strategy during 2021/2022;
- Completion of Community Ward Base Plans following:
- Review of Ward Operational Plans for 2021/2022;
- Review of Ward Level Improvement Plan; and
- Review of Ward Committee Intervention and Maintenance Plan.
In as far as this KPA is concerned, progress is made on the following:
- Strengthening of Inter-Governmental Relations;
- Joint Municipal Planning Tribunal members have been appointed and JMPT is fully operational. JMPT meetings are held quarterly at Zululand District Municipality;
- SPLUMA By-Laws are in place and are implemented.
- Building By-Laws were approved by the Council and are being implemented;
- To maintain the IDP Credibility Status for 2022/2023; and
- Review and Development of the IDP-Sector Plans: Spatial Development Framework,
- Housing Plan, LED Strategy, Agricultural Plan, Environmental Management Plan; Industrial Policy, etc)
- To liaise with the KZN Department of Transport and Department of Community Safety and Liaison with regards to the development of the Integrated Transport Plan and Community Safety Plans.
Having mentioned all these achievements, please allow me to take this opportunity to appreciate the good work that our Councillors and administration are doing. We understand that they sometimes have to take their time which they should be spending with their loved ones and dedicate it to the work of the Municipality. Unfortunately, without them as a Municipality we would not have achieved what we have. We would also like to encourage the Councillors and administration to put more effort, for we believe there is still room for improvement. Finally, I would like to also thank the members of the public who actively and continuously participated and supported our Municipality during the formulation of this IDP 2022/2023.
I thank you!
HONOURABLE MAYOR – CLLR. VM SIKHOSANA