The President’s Coordinating Council (PCC) has endorsed a new district-based model for development that will synchronise planning by all spheres of government and involve citizens and civil society in the development of South Africa’s 44 municipal districts and eight (8) Metros.
This is the key outcome of the first meeting of the President’s Coordinating Council (PCC) of the sixth Administration which met in Pretoria today, 20 August 2019, convened by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
The PCC’s endorsement of the Khawuleza (“hurry up”) District Coordination Service Delivery Model follows overwhelming support for the new approach by joint committees of Cabinet and by the Local Government MINMEC, the structure that comprises the Minister for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs; provincial Members of Executive Councils for local government and the South African Local Government Association (SALGA).
The model will also be submitted for approval by Cabinet at its meeting in Cape Town tomorrow, Wednesday 21 August 2019. The new model will be piloted in the OR Tambo District Municipality in the Eastern Cape at a time that will be identified in due course.
Today’s meeting at the Union Buildings in Pretoria was co-chaired by the President and Deputy President David Mabuza.
The meeting brought together Ministers in The Presidency; the Ministers, Deputy Ministers and Directors-General of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Finance and Public Service and Administration; the nine Provincial Premiers and provincial Directors-General; Executive Mayors of the eight Metros as well as the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) President, Deputy President and Chief Executive Officer.
The PCC deliberations at the Union Buildings gave effect to the commitment by President Ramaphosa in the June 2019 State of the Nation Address that the Council’s agenda would be refocused to sharpen and strengthen cooperative governance and implement a well-coordinated and coherent national programme of action.
The Khawuleza District Coordination Service Delivery Model endorsed by the PCC seeks to secure maximum coordination and cooperation among the national, provincial and local spheres of government, who will act in partnership with civil society – including communities, business and labour – at the district level countrywide.
Across the 44 districts and 8 Metros in the country, all developmental initiatives will be viewed through a district-level lens. Development will be pursued through single, integrated plans per district – one district, one plan – that will outline the role of each sphere of government as well as the role of communities and civil society sectors in each district.
This coordination will require – with effect from the 2020/21 Budget cycle – that national budgets and programmes are spatially referenced across the 44 districts and 8 Metros.
Similarly, provincial government budgets and programmes will be spatially referenced to districts and metros in the respective provinces, while municipalities will express the needs and aspirations of communities in integrated development plans for the 44 districts and 8 Metros. This shift in planning is expected to narrow the distance between citizens and engender active participation by citizens in development, and enable long-term planning as well as responses to immediate “burning” issues.
This new dispensation seeks to change the face of rural and urban landscapes by ensuring complementarity between urban and rural development, with a deliberate emphasis on local economic development.
The district-driven model is directed at turning plans into action, and ensuring proper project management and tracking.
In his opening address to the Council, President Ramaphosa said that in the past, programmes and initiatives had been rolled out without being in synch with government’s overarching strategy.
Shortcomings in previous service delivery models necessitated a new approach to development that would be more practical, achievable, implementable, measurable and clearly aligned to the key priorities of government.
The PCC also received presentations outlining the alignment of draft provincial growth and development plans with the national priorities listed in the June 2019 State of the Nation Address as government’s areas of focus for the current political term.