Engineers and experts ready to rescue 87 troubled municipalities

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Zweli Mkhize to intervene in dysfunctional municipalities.
Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Zweli Mkhize to intervene in dysfunctional municipalities.
Image: SowetanLIVE

The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) has assembled a crack team of engineers and experts to tackle infrastructure and governance issues at distressed municipalities across the country.

In a media briefing on Monday‚ Cogta Minister Zweli Mkhize said the department had identified 87 distressed and dysfunctional municipalities where teams will be sent to intervene.

The intervention programme‚ which will be assisted by National Treasury‚ focuses on three areas: governance and administration‚ financial management and service delivery.

Through its implementing agent‚ the Municipal Infrastructure Support Agent (MISA)‚ the department has employed 81 new engineers and town planners‚ nine provincial managers‚ 36 civil engineers‚ 14 electric engineers and 16 town and regional planners.

The support programme will run until the end of April 2021.

“The technical experts will work with the governance and financial management experts that Cogta is in the process of sourcing‚” said Mkhize.

“The MISA technical experts will focus on infrastructure management‚ while the national and provincial Cogta departments will attend to financial management and governance issues.

“We want to solve once and for all the problem of money being sent back due to failure to spend it by municipalities. The situation in the country has been such that only 55 municipalities out of 257 had engineers leading their technical divisions.

“The teams are expected to build permanent capacity in these municipalities‚ beyond project implementation‚” added Mkhize.

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