South Africa

North West

Supra Mahumapelo paints a rosy picture of North West in budget speech

Supra Mahumapelo paints a rosy picture of North West in budget speech

Listening to North West premier Supra Mahumapelo's budget speech on Tuesday you could be forgiven for thinking that the recent protests in that province were a figment of your imagination.

If embattled North West premier Supra Mahumapelo is to be believed, residents of the province are happy with his government.

On Tuesday, Mahumapelo addressed the provincial legislature about his office’s achievements in the past financial year and what it is planning on achieving in the 2018/19 financial year.

In it he painted a picture of a government delivering services, stamping out corruption and irregular expenditure and providing opportunities for residents of the province.

According to Mahumapelo, residents in the province continue to send the office of the premier messages thanking him for the “great work” he has done for them especially with the Setsokotsane Roma Nna 10 by 10 Campaigns.

Thank you North West government for the roma nna setsokotsane 10 by 10 campaigns in the municipality, more emphasis to be put in cleaning our town,” read a message that Mahumapelo included in his address.

Another message from a resident identified as Letsoalo from Rustenburg said, “Setsokostane thanks, am a second-year nurse student because of the government. Thank you for bringing services to the people.”

Despite these messages of support, in recent weeks residents of Rustenburg and other towns in the province have embarked on violent protests that have seen stores looted, buildings damaged and President Cyril Ramaphosa cutting short an international investment-seeking trip.

The protests aim to highlight the lack of service delivery in the province and to demand that Mahumapelo step down from his post.

SANDF medics have been dispatched to provide health services following a two-month strike by the National Health, Education and Allied Workers Union.

President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed an inter-ministerial task team to address the apparent crisis in the province, particularly in the health sector.

The task team has until Wednesday to report back to the Presidency on the state of the province’s governance.

According to News 24, Mahumapelo told the provincial legislature that he will hand over a letter to the speaker on Friday.

He did not say what the letter would include, but indicated it would be in line with the Constitution.

Quoting late president Nelson Mandela, Mahumapelo said: “The time for healing of the wounds has come. The moment to bridge the chasms that divide us has come. The time to build is upon us.”

The EFF walked out of Tuesday’s budget speech. “We will not sit here and be addressed by a corrupt man, without our motion of no confidence being tabled,” said Betty Diale, an EFF MPL.

The DA refused to support the budget. Joe McGluwa DA North West provincial leader calling the budget a “Gupta budget”.

Today we are debating a budget of R775.38-million. A budget that remains at the mercy of looters, liars and corrupt individuals,” said McGluwa.

According to Mahumapelo the office has, among others, achieved the following for the 2017/18 financial year:

  • A reduction in the wage bill. The office of the premier had reduced the number of posts in the approved structure from 960 to 817.
  • Managed to investigate all cases of irregular expenditure identified during the year under review. DM

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