SUMMARY OF FLAGSHIP PROJECTS 2014 FOR PLACEMENT ON WEBSITE
The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) conducted Local Government assessment to identify the main causes of poor service delivery within certain municipalities across the country.
The assessment results revealed a number of problems within municipalities but most importantly it demonstrated that not all problems experienced by communities are applicable to all municipalities. As a result Minister of CoGTA, Mr Sicelo Shiceka, adopted a differentiated approach as compared to the “one size fits all” approach prevalent in the past to tackling challenges facing municipalities.
Subsequently, in December 2009, the Cabinet of South Africa adopted a new policy direction on the way government operate, namely, Local Government Turnaround Strategy (LGTAS). This policy direction is part of an overall intervention mechanism to improve the performance of local government in its delivery of services to communities across the country.
The adoption of LGTAS was motivated by the critical role played by the local government sphere in the achievement of the new outcomes approach of government with specific reference to Outcome 9 which focuses on the development of an accountable, responsive, efficient and effective local government system in South Africa.
In response to this new policy direction and the assessment results, Minister Sicelo Shiceka initiated and approved five (5) flagship projects to further assist with acceleration of service delivery to the people of South Africa.
The purpose of this document is to develop a summary of all flagship projects for placement on the Website of CoGTA. The information will be accessible to the public at large and will assist to inform both citizens and stakeholders of the department about these projects.
It is important to note that although other institutions and stakeholders are involved in these projects, CoGTA plays a central role for the development and support for these flagship projects in terms of coordination and facilitation to ensure that all means of support are made accessible to participating municipalities across the country.
The summary is also intended to explain what each of the following flagship projects intends to achieve by when and also highlight the impact thereof in changing the lives of the people of South Africa for better.
- Business Adopt- a-Municipality
- Clean Cities and Towns
- Ward Based Cooperatives Projects
- National Municipal Revenue Enhancement Programme
- Operation Clean Audit
THE COGTA FLAGSHIP PROJECTS
2.1 Business Adopt -a- Municipality Project
Business Adopt-a-Municipality (BAaM) is an initiative by the department that seeks to foster a closer working relationship between government, private sector and State Owned Entities (SOEs) towards supporting vulnerable municipalities. The main purpose of the initiative is to encourage private companies to adopt a municipality/ies, enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and together develop an implementation plan to assist such a municipality/ies to, among others, improve infrastructure development, deal with governance challenges and address issues of local economic development (LED) while at the same time contributing to job creation and provision of critical skills. The ultimate goal is for the private sector and SOEs to contribute toward efficient and effective service delivery to communities. The initiative further allows participating private sector companies to enhance their social responsibility and thus contribute towards a better South Africa for all citizens.
The requested support for this initiative will be provided within the Cabinet approved Local Government Turn-around Strategy (LGTAS) and will encompass critical areas of the strategy including:
- Governance and Leadership;
- Strategic Planning;
- Financial Management and Viability;
- Capacity Building and Skills Development;
- Infrastructure Support; and
- Local Economic Development.
It is the intention of BAaM to put up all the two hundred and eighty three (283) municipalities in South Africa for adoption by private companies and SOEs. However it is highly recommended that the sixty six (66) most vulnerable municipalities across the country as identified by the LGTAS be prioritized.
2.1.2 Objectives of the Business Adopt-a-Municipality Project:
- To enhance the capacity of municipalities to deliver services to local communities through continued support from private sector companies and SOEs;
- To learn best practices from the private sector;
- To facilitate private sector companies and SOEs involvement in the support programmes aimed at improving local government infrastructure, economic development and governance;
- Engage and share local government turn-around priorities with business and SOEs with a view to communicate the support requirements and of municipalities;
- To improve communication and partnering between municipalities and the private sector.
Clean Cities and Towns Project:
One of the biggest challenges facing most municipalities in South Africa is lack of universal access to water and electricity, sanitation, refuse removal systems and local economic development.
The Clean Cities and Towns project was identified through the capacity assessment process undertaken by the department during August 2009. The main purpose of this assessment was, among others, to assist municipalities improve the way they manage waste and care for the environment and thus address some of the problems that were posing a health and safety hazards to the society and the environment in their areas.
In order to improve the current state of municipal environmental and waste management, CoGTA developed this project to assist Municipalities to better manage and control waste but also to beautify towns and cities in order to create healthy living environments for all of their citizens. The Clean Cities and Town initiative is therefore a comprehensive attempt by government to address numerous environmental management challenges facing various municipalities across the country including environmental health, waste management, job creation and local economic development in general.
- It is also imperative to indicate that this initiative supports a National Waste Management Strategy developed by the Department of Environmental Affairs which addresses waste management in all spheres of government and private sector. The initiative provides the mechanism for implementing this national strategy at local sphere of government
The Clean Cities and Towns project also responds to five of the seven outputs in the Minister Sicelo Shiceka’s Delivery Agreement on Outcome 9, namely:
- Output 2: Improving access to basic services
- Output 3: Implementation of the Community Work Programme
- Output 4: Actions supportive of the human settlement outcome
- Output 5: Deepen democracy through a refined Ward Committee Model
- Output 7: A single Window of Coordination
Objectives of the Clean Cities and Towns projects:
- To develop a roadmap towards a collaborative approach to clean cities and towns campaign focusing on vulnerable municipalities;
- To increase public awareness in clean cities, clean air and safe environment and develop a better understanding of the undesirable nature and causes of uncared environment;
- To mobilize partners and identify roles that they can play in ensuring that cities are clean, safe and attractive to tourists and investors;
- Improve the quality of life in neighborhoods and fostering civic vitality and participation through urban and rural renewal programmes, local consultations, and community empowerment.
2.3 Cooperatives Programme
The Ward Based Cooperatives Programme (WBCP) is designed as an economic empowerment initiative for communities through the promotion of the Cooperative form of enterprise. Through the WBCP, the Department aims to facilitate the establishment and support of Cooperatives owned by local communities in order to contribute towards job creation, skills development and ultimately, local economic development (LED). The initiative allows for communities, through their participation in Cooperatives, to have access to economic opportunities and actively participate in the development of their local economy.
The Programme is part of the Local Government Turn-around Strategy (LGTAS) and is meant to enhance the municipal contribution to job creation, sustainable livelihoods and local economic development.
The WBCP is directly linked to the Department’s Community Work Programme (CWP) which aims to provide an employment safety net, by providing a minimum level of regular work opportunities to communities. The main target of CWP is to create 237 000 work opportunities and to have at least two Wards in each municipality with functional cooperatives by 2014. Thus all work opportunities created through the CWP are to be linked to functional Cooperatives.
The WBCP is also intrinsically aligned to the objectives of government in terms of rural development strategy and the empowerment of previously disadvantaged individuals (PDIs) living in rural areas. The core focus areas of the programme will therefore be those municipality Wards identified as economically depressed by government, focusing primarily on the participation of the youth and women.
Whilst implementing the programme, the concept document will be continuously reviewed to ensure it takes into consideration experiences and lessons learnt from implementation in this and other similar programmes. This will culminate to a long-term strategy that will provide a model for facilitating the establishment and implementation of ward-based Cooperatives and ensure that in the long run, every ward has an economic activity linked to a Cooperative Enterprise.
National Municipal Revenue Enhancement Project
The purpose of this project is to provide support to municipalities to improve revenue collection and lack of internal capacity to improve realisation processes and systems.
The project will follow a two dimensional strategic approach which focuses on short-term solutions as well as long term solutions which will address four key intervention areas namely infrastructure; processes; systems and customer relations.
2.4.1 Objectives of the National Municipal Revenue Enhancement Project:
- Contain the current runaway debt;
- Enhance current revenue realisation capacity;
- Eliminate stock shrinkage (unaccounted for water & electricity); and
- Educate and mobilise the public to be good citizens by paying for the services they consume through the cultivation of a culture of “you-use-you-pay” to your local municipality theme.
Operation Clean Audit Project
The purpose of this project is to address all issues raised by the Auditor General and reduce vulnerability to risks in the provincial departments and municipal financial management and governance processes and systems. The target is to assist all the municipalities and provincial departments to achieve sustainable improvement in financial management and governance that will yield clean audit opinions by 2014.
In each financial year the Office of the Auditor-General of South Africa (AGSA) continues to raise and reveal ineffectiveness in the internal control environments in the audit reports of many Municipalities in the country. This ineffectiveness is caused by issues such as poor performance or absence of systems, especially financial management systems. This negatively impacts on the government’s ability to deliver services, good governance and accountability to the people of South Africa.
As a result the Department of Cooperative Governance in collaboration with the Office of the Auditor General launched Operation Clean Audit project to help municipalities achieve clean audits on their Annual Financial Statements and maintaining systems for sustaining quality financial statements and management information.
The project was launched nationally in June 2009 in all provinces and the provincial co-coordinating committees (PCC) forums were established in each province which are now responsible for coordination, implementation and reporting on operation clean audit project milestones.
In addition a programme of action for Municipal finance was developed at the conference in North West in May 2010 and subsequently a delivery agreement for outcome 9 was developed of which operation clean audit is responsible for most of output 6.
2.5.1 Operation Clean Audit Project Milestones:
- Between 2010 and 2011, no municipality and provincial departments achieving Adverse and Disclaimer Audit opinions
- At least 60% of provincial departments and the 283 municipalities achieving unqualified audit opinion by 2012
- At least an increase in provincial departments and municipalities achieving unqualified audit percentage to 75% by 2013
Financial management challenges facing both provincial and local governments include among others:
- Inadequate skills on planning, budgeting, financial management, expenditure management, credit control, debt management, risk management and internal audit;
- Poor interface between financial and non-financial information (in-year-monitoring and quality annual reporting);
- Lack of systems to manage audit queries and recommendations by both internal and external auditors;
- Inadequate systems to manage good governance practices (especially, conflict of interest and accountability frameworks) within provincial departments and municipalities;
- Leadership and management inaction, especially with regard to following on audit queries, both from internal and external auditors;
- Inadequate administrative and political oversight to strengthen accountability and responsibility.
3. Other Stakeholders
- The Presidency
- Department of Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries
- Department of Economic Development
- Department of Environmental Affairs
- Department of Rural Development and Land Reform
- Department of Women, Children & People with Disabilities
- Auditor General
- Department of Public Works
- Department of Trade & Industry
- Office of the Premiers (all provinces)
Key contact persons: Dr Keneilwe Sebego
Telephone number: ( 012) 443 0661
Telephone: (012) 334 0961