DCoG Deputy Minister Parks Tau

CoGTA National Council of Provinces NCOP 2023 Budget Vote Speech by Deputy Minister Parks Tau

Honourable Members,

Allow me to rise on the protocol that has been observed by the CoGTA Minister.

The tabling of the budget speech comes at a time when we celebrate Youth Month under
the theme “Accelerating youth economic emancipation for a sustainable future”. We
rightly commemorate Youth Month since youth are the heroes of tomorrow and it is our
collective duty to ensure they are well-equipped to take on the world of today and

We are grateful for this valuable opportunity because the NCOP is an institution that
represents the interests of our provinces, fosters cooperative governance, promotes
accountability, and encourages public participation.

As the Minister emphasised, making local government work is everyone’s business.


Both the 2022 State of Local Government Report and the recently released Auditor-General Report, paint a worrying picture of the health of local government in our country.
Strengthening the local government system is not only about defining the shortcomings
of the cooperative governance system. It centers on deploying necessary systematic and
institutional multiple measures to advance developmental and transformative local
government to protect the gains of our democracy.

Honorable Chairperson,

The professionalisation of the Public Sector

As you are aware, in line with our efforts to professionalise the public sector, Cabinet
approved in November 2022 a Framework Towards the Professionalisation of the Public
Service. The Framework requires, amongst others, that senior managers across all three
spheres must be appointed on merit. We remain on course to support them to build a
capable, responsive, and professional local public administration that delivers on its

Many fixed-term contracts of municipal managers came to an end on 8 November 2021.
The filling of these posts coincides with the implementation of the Municipal Systems
Amendment Act, 2022, which came into effect on 1 November 2022.

The Municipal Systems Amendment Act echoes the sentiment of the Professionalisation
Framework. It obliges municipalities to appoint municipal managers and managers who
possess the prescribed skills, expertise, competencies, and qualifications.

As CoGTA, we are engaged in strengthening mechanisms to enforce compliance with
these measures to ensure accountability and meritocratic appointment. As such, the MEC
for local government in the Province or the Minister is empowered by law that, upon
receipt of an appointment report to take appropriate steps to enforce compliance by the
municipal council with the Amendment Act. This may include an application to a court for
a declaratory order on the validity of the appointment or any other legal action against the
municipal council.

Honorable Chairperson,

Section 139(7) National Interventions in Municipalities

Allow me to bring to this House an update on the important provision in South Africa’s
local government system, namely Section 139(7) of the Constitution. Section 139(7) of
National Interventions in Municipalities allows for national interventions in municipalities
when certain conditions are met.

The purpose of this national intervention is to restore good governance, financial stability,
and the provision of services to the affected community. This is done to improve the
quality of life, foster social cohesion, promote economic development, restore public trust,
strengthen democratic institutions, and mitigate social unrest/protests.

In this regard, we continue to monitor the implementation of national interventions in terms
of Section 139(7) of the Constitution in Lekwa LM (MP), Mangaung Metro (FS), and Enoch
Mgijima LM in the Eastern Cape.

Interventions in Mangaung Metro and Lekwa Local Municipality through joint efforts with
Departments of Human Settlements, CoGTA, Transport, MISA, and National Treasury
seconded senior officials to occupy management positions to stabilise the municipalities
have resulted in the following:

We have also recorded progress in the Mangaung Metro, which includes:
a. A water and sewer reticulation network study has been conducted and a
rehabilitation report compiled for dilapidated infrastructure replacement.
b. Critical vacant engineering positions have been identified to be advertised.
c. Prioritisation of the budget for infrastructure maintenance and sourcing of
additional funding from the Department of Water and Sanitation through the Water
Services Improvement Programme (WSIP) for the refurbishment of all Wastewater
Treatment Works.
d. Repairs to the fleet are ongoing and an additional 15% of the fleet was operational
as of the end of August 2022.
e. Procurement processes have been streamlined and supply chain management
committees are convening regularly.
f. In total, 29,5 km of roads have been resurfaced and pothole repairs and re-graveling/grading of gravel roads are ongoing.
g. Refurbishment of the water supply systems project is being implemented and the
Water Conservation and Demand Management Plan has been finalised.

It is encouraging that the implementation of major revenue enhancement projects, within
the Lekwa Local Municipality, is now gaining momentum.

The programme includes various revenue enhancement projects which include the following:
a. The DBSA is assisting with capacity support in the following areas within the BTO
section, credit control, debt collection, payment incentive programme, and
customer care. The support includes, amongst others, locating and ensuring
access to water meters that are buried/covered / inaccessible for reading
purposes, tariff structure review, and restructuring in respect of solid waste, water,
and sanitation services.
b. National Treasury approved funding of R45 million for the installation of 7,678
smart meters. To date, approximately 3,000 new meters have been installed. Of
course, the project is faced with the challenges of rolling loadshedding and
community resistance. Moving forward, it will be vital for the municipality to
manage these challenges with the assistance of ward councilors and ward
c. The Municipality continues to make weekly payments to the major creditors until
such time that the financial position of the Municipality improves.
d. The Minister of DWS committed an amount of R350 million to address water and
sanitation challenges; High impact short-term interventions were identified in that
the District has already commenced implementation of these projects which
include upgrade and repair of pump stations, unblocking of sewer pipelines,
internal sewer reticulation, repair water treatment works, etc.
e. The Municipality was able to collect over R30 million of debt.
f. The municipality has also recorded a reduction in electricity losses (from 34% in
June 2021 to 25% in June 2022)

Honourable Members,

These notable interventions are an example of making local government everyone’s
business. They indicate progress being made through monitored national interventions.
We look forward to achieving more and call on all our social partners in the private sector
and our international partners to join us in advancing developmental local government.

Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG)

The Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) is instrumental in transforming our
municipalities, providing the necessary resources to enhance our infrastructure, and
improving the quality of life for all residents. An amount of R17,6 billion and R55,0 billion
over the 2023 MTEF has been allocated to municipalities in the 2023/24 financial year.

We take pride in the 116 municipalities that have spent above 90% of their cumulative
allocations, over the past four years. We further welcome the decrease in the number of
municipalities experiencing perennial non-performance of the MIG from 39 to 36 when
comparing the MIG allocations for 2020/21 and 2021/22.

This is a welcome improvement that we know needs to be built upon. It is for this reason
that we are deploying MISA to provide technical support through the DDM to ensure that
the MIG performance is improved.

To prevent unspent MIG allocations from being returned to the national fiscus, we will act
in municipalities with under-expenditure by utilising provisions of the Division of Revenue
Act, thus allowing us to retain a portion of the MIG allocation and establish an indirect
grant known as Schedule 6B.

Integrated Urban Development Grant (IUDG)

In an era of rapid urbanisation, our cities face complex challenges that demand innovative
and holistic solutions. The Integrated Urban Development Grant (IUDG) recognises the
need for integrated approaches to urban development, considering various dimensions
such as infrastructure, housing, transportation, social services, and environmental

At present, we have 8 municipalities that receive the IUDG. These include Polokwane,
Sol Plaatje, Steve Tshwete, Mogale City, Ray Nkonyeni, Umhlathuze, Stellenbosch, and
Drakenstein, with George addition from the 2023/24 financial year. Through the IUDG,
we aim to provide funding for public investment in infrastructure as well as promote
increased access to municipal own sources of capital finance to increase funding for
public investment in economic infrastructure.

Municipal Systems Improvement Grant (MSIG)

A total of 9 projects are currently being implemented by CoGTA as interventions to
address a range of governance and institutional issues in identified municipalities and
through the use of the MSIG.

The total MSIG allocation for the 2022/23 financial year amounted to R140,000,000, with
more than 63,000,000 spent as of 31 March 2023. The MSIG is realising an average
growth from R146, 000 in the 2023/24 financial year to R159,000 in the 2025/25 financial
year. The total spent as of 30 April 2023 amounts to R489,000.00.

Honourable Chairperson,

Community Work Programme

The Community Work Programme (CWP) is a ward-based government programme
intended to mitigate poverty and unemployment. To date, the CWP provides an
employment safety net to approximately 264,000 unemployed and underemployed
participants in wards with high levels of poverty.

These participants are provided a minimum number of regular days of work, two days a
week, eight days a month, and hundred days a year, thus deriving a predictable income
stream. The work done by participants benefits communities and community assets,
whilst at the same time providing participants with training to improve Useful Work

Over the years, the CWP experienced operational challenges that generated negative
publicity that resulted in questions about the efficacy of the current implementation model
and hence the resolve to restructure the programme.

The contracts for the Implementing Agents (IAs) came to an end on the 31st of March
2023. The Department has since been managing the CWP programme through the
transition. Additionally, the Department is alive to the fact that the original problem
statement that informed the CWP theory of change was exacerbated by the COVID-19

In this regard, the restructuring of the programme is envisaged to posit its implementation
as a constitute of the DDM. Consistent with the DDM approach, a restructured CWP
should ensure the coordination of all stakeholders inclusive especially of the private
sector. It should foster smart partnerships to deal with the challenge of poverty and
unemployment and the resultant socio-economic problems.

Also, in so doing a restructured CWP would facilitate a rigorous skills development
programme that culminates in qualitative outputs that make available Artisans and enable
the establishment of Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs).

Honourable Members,

Disaster Coordination

The Department has facilitated the allocation of R3.3 billion during the budget adjustment
period to the affected municipalities in the KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape and Western
Cape Provinces towards the reconstruction and rehabilitation of disaster damages in the

We are pleased with the work undertaken to restore our provinces following the floods we
experienced. Last month, we undertook a multisectoral team visit led by the National
Disaster Management Centre (NDMC) to various municipalities that received funding
from the Municipal Disaster Response Grant (MDRG) since they were severely affected
by the floods in KZN.

We were able to assess the progress made in terms of the repairs that were supposed to
be done on critical municipal infrastructure in municipalities across the KZN province
including the Alfred Duma Local Municipality, Inkosi Langalibalele Local Municipality,
Msunduzi Local Municipality, eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality and kwaDukuza Local

The repairs were undertaken in infrastructure projects such as roads, storm water,
bridges and water treatment facilities. The insights gained from these site visits will inform
further decision-making and facilitate ongoing collaboration between relevant
stakeholders to address any identified challenges effectively.

Honourable Chairperson

The Drop Reports

Yesterday we joined the Minister of Water & Sanitation, Hon Senzo Mchunu, when he
announced the Green Drop Watch Report.
The Green, Blue and No Drop Certification programmes are regulatory mechanisms of
the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS). The aim of this uniquely South African
regulatory tool is to improve municipal drinking water quality, wastewater management
as well as water conservation and demand management. The reports keep the public and
stakeholders informed and updated with credible data and information about the state of
water and sanitation services in the country.

The Watch Reports released by the Department of Water and Sanitation on 06 June 2023
indicates that there has been a decline in drinking water quality and an increase in non-revenue water since the last Drop reports were issued. The Green Drop Watch Report
indicates that 50% of those municipalities whose waste water treatment systems were
found to be in a critical state in the 2022 Green Drop report have failed to develop and
implement plans to improve them.
To address these findings, the Department Water has issued compliance notices and
directives to the relevant municipalities instructing them to correct the situation. Where

the notices and directives are not acted upon, the Department institutes legal action
against the municipality.
The Departments of Water and Sanitation and CoGTA will work together in supporting
and intervening in many municipalities across the country to improve water and sanitation
services. The municipalities will also be assisted with grant funding to address
infrastructure deficits and also with technical expertise and management support.


As I conclude House Chairperson and before I hand over…

In celebrating Youth Month it is incumbent upon all of us to make local government
everyone’s business by leveraging the slight economic expansion to youth empowerment.
This is an existential responsibility of everyone to link political freedom to economic
emancipation, especially for those young people not in education, employment, and
training (NEETs).

As CoGTA we urge our social partners in the private sector to join us in realising
meaningful economic emancipation in a coproduction model in municipalities that
provides efficient service delivery, promotes economic development, restores public trust,
and strengthens our democratic institutions.

These are realisable goals if we work together, and more so, leading to the 2024 financial
year when South Africa will be commemorating 30 years of democracy and reflecting on
the State of Local Government moving forward.

I thank you