21 February 2017
Despite the challenges facing the Northern Cape, the Democratic Alliance expects that the premier will repeat her usual empty rhetoric when she presents her State of the Province Address on Thursday. We simply cannot expect a credible speech from someone who has proven herself nothing more than a loudmouthed reactionary. Knowing the premier, she will probably hijack the opportunity to lobby support ahead of the ANC’s provincial elective conference.
The premier must give the province the assurance that the finances are in good hands, especially with reference to senior officials doing business with either the government or municipalities.
Allowing health to be ruled by officials who without proper consultation stop salaries of colleagues during the Christmas period and beyond is reckless and smacks of political infighting. The Democratic Alliance would like to see that this gross negligence result in officials being held accountable in their personal capacity.
Following the investigative task team that was launched at Health and has resulted in a number of suspensions and criminal investigations, we hope that the premier will make a pronouncement on the establishment of a similar task team to investigate allegations of corruption at the department of Roads & Public Works. This comes amidst serious concerns regarding the awarding of tenders to politically connected individuals and the siphoning of money away from departmental mandates into the pockets of individual officials.
Municipalities are also cash cows for individuals. Pals are appointed at high salaries, but consultants are brought in to do the work. We need to hear a practical announcement from the premier on interventions at municipalities to ensure that finances are managed properly and services are delivered to residents.
Under the ANC, the provincial government has failed to create an environment conducive for job creation and growth. Our unemployment rates are skyrocketing and we are bleeding jobs on a daily basis. We need to hear a concrete, feasible strategy that will give jobs to our people and hope for our future.
We hope that the premier makes an announcement on plans to absorb additional social work graduates whose studies were funded by the department of Social Development, but who remain unemployed.
We would also like her to give an opinion on the Northern Cape’s state of readiness to pay grants.
The premier needs to address the drought conditions, which despite recent rains will still have a long term impact on food security and the provincial economy. In this regard, we would like to see a greater commitment from the premier towards mitigating the effects of natural disasters in future.
Given the high death toll on our roads as a direct result of motor vehicle accidents, we would like the premier to speak to road safety in the province, especially in light of the department of Transport, Safety & Liaison being unable to facilitate a 24/7 service to citizens of the Northern Cape.
We are also keen to hear the premier’s way forward in addressing the high rate of sexual offences and domestic violence, as well as the growing rate of drug and alcohol related crimes in the province. This is especially crucial, given the growing lack of trust in SAPS by citizens of the province.
DA Provincial Leader in the Northern Cape
082 383 6914
071 251 5558