11 July 2016
Executive Mayor of Alfred Nzo District Municipality, Ms Eunice Diko,
Mayor of Matatiele, Momelezi Mbedla,
Members of the Mayoral Committees,
Municipal Managers and staff of the municipalities,
Our young learners,
Abahlali base Matatiele,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you for joining me today.
We are indeed a government that delivers.
Our presence here today is proof that we are a government that cares for its people.
In the past 5 years the municipality has spent millions of rands building has spent millions of rand on building new roads, bridges and community halls.
We have also brought electricity to many areas, although there is still work to be done.
I understand that 2016 marks the 10th anniversary of the formation of the new Matatiele Local Municipality.
I am inspired by your Vision of investing in nature, tourism and agriculture to uplift Matatiele.
Events such as the Matatiele Music Festival, which celebrated its fifth anniversary last year are indicative of your success in this regard.
I’m told that the town of Matatiele even has a television show named after it.
In Sandfontein the municipality has built a community hall, installed solar systems and improved water & sanitation.
We have built 300 houses at Caba-Mdeni village, 500 in Mvenyane, 898 in Mehloaneng.
I commend the municipality for the development of its Local Economic Development Strategy
Last year our partner in local government, SALGA, hosted the inaugural Small Towns Regeneration Conference.
I urge you to take note of the conference’s recommendations, especially on agriculture and tourism.
To our young people,
I hope that you seize the opportunity provided to you with both hands.
The education and the provision of skills to our youth is a top priority of this government.
Our Community Work Programme (CWP) targets the poorest of the poor.
Out of the total number of CWP participants, women comprised 77%.
The youth account for 42% of beneficiaries.
The Municipal Infrastructure Agent or MISA is also involved in training youth in municipalities.
Through its capacity building programme MISA is training 400 apprentices in various technical trades that are critical for municipal infrastructure delivery.
These trades include electrical, plumbing, fitting and turning, millwright as well as bricklaying.
Most of these learners are expected to qualify as artisans in 2017 and 2018.
I am glad that you have also been empowered through MISA’s efforts.
I congratulate you on qualifying as Water and Waste Water Process Controllers.
You are the future of Matatiele.
Do not take your training lightly or underestimate its importance.
It is through our collective efforts that we have been able to lift our country to great heights.
It is through our collective efforts that we freed our country from the shackles of apartheid.
It is through our collective efforts that we can make South Africa a leading nation in the 21st century.
It starts with you.
This month is Mandela Month.
We celebrate the efforts of that great icon of our nation, Tata Madiba.
We have been bequeathed a rich legacy by one of the greatest icons of the last 100 years.
Let us live up to that legacy in everything we do.
His selflessness and humanity towards others should still guide our efforts.
Let us continue to Take Action and Inspire Change.
I urge you to make every day a Mandela Day.
In this vein, let me reiterate that we are a government that cares.
We are well aware that the drought has hit the Eastern Cape province hard.
We know that in December one of the dams in Matatiele even ran dry.
We have taken steps to alleviate this.
5 000-litre tanks have been located at strategic areas.
The handing over of the ten boreholes forms part of our efforts to ensure that citizens receive the best possible water services.
We are committed to ensuring that we improve the lives of our citizens for the better.
A world-class Multi-Purpose Centre is scheduled to open on 14 July in Thaba-Chicha village, Matatiele.
The village was the home of the late struggle stalwart, whom after the District Municipality is named, Alfred Nzo.
The Centre will include a soccer field, boardroom, indoor courts, clinic, and early childhood centre and government offices.
The facility will provide villagers with a one-stop shop where they can access government services.
It will also be a venue for communal gatherings and sporting activities.
Please bear with us.
I am aware that there are still challenges with roads and electricity.
We cannot overcome 300 years of colonialism and 50 years of apartheid overnight.
The governments before 1994 neglected these areas.
Through these projects not only have we improved water service delivery to our citizens, but dealt a blow to unemployment.
You have seen the changes this government has brought.
We will bring more.
Allow us the opportunity to continue with this good work, when you vote on 03 August.
I thank you.