Mogalakwena municipality receives R1,4 billion budget

MOKOPANE – Matsemela presented the State of Mogalakwena Address (Soma) at the Oasis Lodge to 500 guests and municipality delegates.

Mogalakwena is responsible for the provision services to 82 675 households for water and sanitation, roads and storm water, refuse removal and electricity distribution.

Matsemela said: “Today we present for approval a total annual budget of R1,4 billion for the 2017/18 financial year. This is made up of R885,1 million operating expenditure and R486,1 million for capital expenditure. However, we will appropriate a three year capital budget of R933,2 million, to 2019/20.”

“The operating budget being tabled today is for the 2017/18 financial year while the capital budget is for the three year period up to 2020. The municipality has budgeted for a 7.36% increase in employee salaries. Altogether R30 million has been budgeted for the implementation of job evaluation results currently being conducted by Salga.

Andrina Matsemela (Mogalakwena Municipality, Mayor) and municipal councillors.

“The electricity tariff increase for 2017/18 as per the proposal from Nersa is 1,88%. The proposed water tariff increase for 2017/18 as per Lepelle-Northern Water is 8,5%. We remain mindful that some of our growing communities or new extensions in the rural areas are still without basic services. We are committed to working in partnership with our institutions of traditional leadership and sector departments to eradicate the remaining service delivery backlogs.”

Matsemela said many initiatives came at a cost to the municipality which required more and more financial resources to be released from the reserves.

With all these challenges, the municipality can still pride itself in that it managed to deliver services to the people under difficult circumstances.

According to Matsemela, coupled with this was the challenge of a reducing revenue collection rate both in the current and historical debt book.

To boost income growth Matsemela said: “We will initiate various programmes aimed at enhancing our revenue and improving the balance sheet of our municipality.

“Programmes such as street parking management, smart metering, debt consolidation for our customers, repairing leakages, energy efficiency programmes such as solar geyser and recycling of waste. Many other challenges made the preparation of the IDP and budget a very tedious balancing act”.

Matsemela said this budget will not address any possible unauthorised expenditure with regard to non-cash expenditure items offsetting depreciation, bad debt provision, provision for fines bad debt impairment, leave provision, rehabilitation of landfill site provision, long service bonus provision and medical aid provision for continued members after retirement and additional budget allocation requests due to tight budget as alluded to earlier.

Matsemela said by working together, the municipality will be able to defeat unemployment, inequality and wanton poverty. “This country of ours is abundantly sprinkled with seeds of goodwill. Let us therefore, work together energetically, black and white, united in diversity, to overcome any obstacle that may cross our path towards success and prosperity.”

Korny Dekker (Councillor and DA Leader of Mokopane) said the DA cannot approve the budget.

“We are all aware there is a water problem in Mogalakwena but very little about this was mentioned in the mayor’s speech. Delivery of basic water needs is a constitutional right to every South African citizen and we needed a clearer plan on the supply of water.” Dekker said unemployment is an issue that needs to be in every leader’s speech.

“Why was there so little mentioned on LED programmes, surely this needs to be addressed, there is no clear plan to address the unemployment of Mogalakwena. We must all be on alert and ensure the funds are managed as per the municipal financial management act.”

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Mariëtte Roos

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