Bhisho-UN collaboration set to bring many changes in EC

Premier Phumulo Masualle, centre, and UNnited Nations resident co-ordinator Nardos Bekele-Thomas, left, attend a two-day Eastern Cape-UN workshop in East London on Wednesday.
Premier Phumulo Masualle, centre, and UNnited Nations resident co-ordinator Nardos Bekele-Thomas, left, attend a two-day Eastern Cape-UN workshop in East London on Wednesday.
Image: Randell Roskruge

Poor service delivery might be a thing of the past in the province if all goes according to the vision of premier Phumulo Masualle and the UN.

The provincial government is set to receive major assistance and expertise from a team of about 17 UN agencies with a footprint in SA.

These agencies include the UN’s industrial development agency, the food and agriculture organisation, its office for coordination of humanitarian affairs, its children’s emergency fund and its development programme.

This was announced by Masualle and his UN counterpart, resident co-ordinator Nardos Bekele-Thomas, at a two-day Eastern Cape-UN workshop to create a partnership for sustainable development at the East London IDZ this week.

The workshop, which ends on Thursday, was attended by senior officials including Eastern Cape DG Marion Mbina-Mthembu, as well as provincial HoDs, municipal managers and senior academics.

The integrated development co-operation workshop – the first of its kind – aims to address incapacities and inefficiencies within the provincial government by partnering the UN agencies with those in provincial government.

Masualle started his engagements with the UN in March.

“It comes in very handy for the provincial government to have development practitioners that have the amount of experience that the UN has. It helps us also to find access to the right forms of the most updated or modern techniques to secure development,” Masualle said.

He said his administration was committed but the government could not address poverty, equality and unemployment alone.

“Through this collaboration, we want to make sure we access the most modern forms of support for our people,” Masualle said.

Bekele-Thomas said the UN was excited to join forces with the provincial government in promoting a dignified life.

“Our agencies are well known and we are in contact with expertise around the globe. Based on that we can bring the latest technologies and technical capacity,” Bekele-Thomas said.

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