Two years on, and DA-led metros have brought change to millions of South Africans

The following remarks were delivered by the Leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA), Mmusi Maimane, in Greater Ellis Park in Johannesburg today. The Leader was joined by the Executive Mayor of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba, and the Executive Mayor of Tshwane, Solly Msimanga.

Two years ago to the day, history was made when the Democratic Alliance (DA) was elected into government in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay – the first time the ANC had lost control of these cities. As soon as agreements were finalised, coalition governments with several political parties were formed to serve the people and bring about real change.

From day one, it was clear that the governments inherited from previous administrations were in shambles – both financially and administratively. These administrations were endemically corrupt and heavily bloated which will again be the case if the ANC are ever again trusted to govern these cities.

Since then, these governments have been hard at work putting residents first by cutting corruption, prioritising service delivery, and passing pro-poor budgets in order to create jobs. This is a responsibility that we do not take lightly.

Any modern economy’s prospect for sustainable development and growth hinges on the effectiveness of city-led economic growth. And the Greater Ellis Park area that we find ourselves in today is a visionary example of the sustainable growth of a city within a city. This is an example of how Mayor Mashaba is turning dilapidated and abandoned land in the Johannesburg inner city and revitalising it – creating low-cost housing and job creating industry to address historical injustices.

The very property we are on today is one of 71 pieces of inner city land earmarked as commercial and residential development for the benefit of the people of eGoli. This 1 640 square metre site is intended for the development of mixed income housing.

Johannesburg’s New Doornfontein City Improvement District (CID) continues to pioneer the utility of industrial land in the east inner city. What was the City’s historic manufacturing hub went to ruin under the previous ANC government, but is now on the cusp of being transformed.

The diverse space of land is set to be used as a manufacturing hub for mostly warehousing, light industry and amenities, an educational precinct, a mixed-use area for largely manufacturing, light engineering, warehousing, office and retail and at the heart of the development, a sports mecca space.

This is only one shining example of the DA difference that continues to transform the lives of more than 16 million South Africans living under a DA government. While we may have inherited metro governments that had long been forgotten by the ANC, DA governments will never take for granted those we serve – and the more than R100 billion in pro-poor budgets that were successfully passed in these governments are testament to this.

Today is a day to celebrate the first 24 months of DA-led coalition governments in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay as they lead in the fight to create jobs, stand up against crime, cut corruption and build One South Africa For All. These DA-led governments will continue to stand tall as beacons of hope for the South Africa of tomorrow.

City of Johannesburg

This hope was cultivated when upon assuming office in August 2016, the City of Johannesburg set itself the ambitious task of growing Johannesburg’s economy to 5% by 2021. This remains a high target but was a goal the Mayor’s team needed to reach to create jobs and turn the rising tide against unemployment in the City.

From day one, the DA-led City of Johannesburg made jobs and growth its primary focus. By creating an enabling environment for entrepreneurs and businesses to grow, it was only a matter of time before the results began to show.

Despite the continued rise in the national expanded unemployment rate to 37.2% in the second quarter of 2018, the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) released by Stats SA earlier this week shows this government has created an environment that produced 109 000 new jobs since the beginning of the year. This was achieved while reducing the expanded unemployment rate from 32.3% to 30.8%. If this trend continues, the City is well on its way to reaching the goal of 5% growth by 2021.

Quality infrastructure and the stabilisation of services will always be a non-negotiable for business in the continent’s economic capital. The City has met this expectation by not only renewing infrastructure and stabilising services but establishing a responsive, dedicated, accountable and professional civil service that inspires confidence with the people of Johannesburg and delivers world-class services that will continue to make Johannesburg an attractive destination for investment.

The Khoebo Opportunity Centre has seen hundreds of young entrepreneurs walk through its doors, turning ideas into small businesses. The roll out of these Opportunity Centres are beginning to assist residents with crucial skills and support to grow their businesses so that they too can create job opportunities. In addition to Khoebo, the City’s goal is to create 13 more Opportunity Centres through Johannesburg, deepening access to jobs with two in every one of the seven regions throughout the City by 2021.

Crime and corruption have become public enemy number one in the City of Johannesburg, and we are winning the war. More than 3 500 cases of corruption and maladministration involving almost R18 billion has been uncovered by the newly established Group Forensics and Investigation Services (GFIS) and the recruitment of an additional 1 500 Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) officers has ensured the streets of Johannesburg are much safer. The launch of Operation Buya Mthetho has seen to more than 8 000 arrests by law enforcement officials since the beginning of the year.

Over 20 000 arrests have been made by the JMPD, and the GFIS has a specialised unit that counter-acts building hijacking syndicates and returns properties that have been hijacked to their rightful owners. With the assistance of the JMPD, this unit has already returned 73 buildings to their rightful owners.

A free Community Substance Abuse Treatment Centres has been opened which includes provision for a 24-hour crisis line where the people of Johannesburg can speak with caring professional staff to get the help that they need. By the end of this financial year there will be eight of these Centres reaching areas such as Poortjie, Bophelong and Cosmo City.

In order to open up access to health services, extended operating hours within City clinics have ensured that residents do not have to decide between making it to work and receiving medical attention, and so that students never have to choose between going to school and accessing healthcare.

City of Tshwane

The City of Tshwane has also become the talk of the town with the Capital City having allocated R137.2 million towards Extended Public Works Programme (EPWP) initiatives this financial year. In September last year, much needed reforms to the City’s EPWP recruitment policy were introduced, effectively ending the system of insiders and outsiders that have previously marred EPWP job opportunities.

Tshwane’s reformed EPWP recruitment policy framework is built on the principle of transparency. The selection process involves an open public lottery system where beneficiaries are randomly selected so that no individual can be approached or lobbied to occupy any of the work opportunities available in the City.

The new DA government inherited a major housing backlog, and corruption and maladministration had taken over the building and allocation of houses to the poorest of residents. While many live without the dignity of a brick and mortar home, previous ANC mayors lived in lavish luxury in the so called “Mayoral Mansion”. This mansion was put up for sale and on 23 November last year it was sold for R5.1 million in order to build houses for those without. Proceeds made from the sale are already being used to build 40 houses for those without.

Over the past two years, great strides have been made towards stabilising the City’s finances. This was achieved by strengthening the controls over supply chain processes, slashing unauthorised and unnecessary expenditure and extricating the City from unlawful and expensive contracts.

This has resulted in turning a R2 billion inherited deficit into a surplus. The reported operating deficit for 2015/16 was R2.1 billion which was restated to R1.3 billion during the next financial year’s audit process. This is evidence of a DA-run City handling public money with care, ensuring it is spent on the people, not politicians.

The Capital City closed the financial year with an operating surplus of R704 million.

Nelson Mandela Bay

On the other end of the country, the Nelson Mandela Bay coalition government has had all the odds stacked against them from day one. But in the face of adversity, a budget that focused on low-income communities, housing and informal settlement upgrades, roads, lights and community facilities was passed.

Prudent budgeting enabled the first Metro Police Service in the Eastern Cape to have been launched in Nelson Mandela Bay to tackle the scourge of crime in the City. Working closely with the South African Police Service (SAPS), they have seen to an 11% decrease in gang related crimes in the City’s most dangerous communities such as Helenvale where a pilot project with Shot Spotter has improved response times and seen a number of critical arrests made.

The service has grown to 135 officers and 38 patrol vehicles with a specialised bicycle unit, ghost squad and bylaw enforcement unit in operation. It has been such a success that the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Police Department’s Annual Police Plan format was adopted as the blueprint to be used by all Metro Police Departments nationwide.

In two years, the rooting out of corrupt senior officials, securing and monitoring of SCM offices and opening up of the Bid Adjudication Committee (BIC) to the public has turned around the City’s finances and SCM and ensured that every penny is accounted for. The City is now liquid with over R2 billion in the bank, has a steadily rising collection rate and achieves some of the best capital expenditure in the country.

NMB recently received a AAA credit rating and a windfall Urban Settlements Development Grant (USDG) allocation of R178.8 million on top of the R911 million received at the beginning of the financial year. The City has succeeded in spending close to R1.1 billion on capital works that has directly improve the lives of the poor and made for better service delivery.

Services such as the Assistance to the Poor (ATTP) will see recipients receive R2 billion over the medium term, while R1.5 million is going to be spent on informal trading (EDTA) infrastructure. Almost half a billion rand has been apportioned to upgrading housing and informal settlements, human settlement projects, a bucket eradication programme, informal housing and electrification programmes. To date 9 000 of the 16 000 bucket toilets inherited from the previous ANC government have been eradicated.

To ensure the safety of their roads, more than half a billion rand has been put aside for roads and lighting. In addition to this, R150 million has been reserved for the upgrading and development of community facilities like Multi-Purpose Centres, libraries, sports facilities, parks and open public spaces.


These DA-led governments have put the people of Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay first by creating jobs, waging war on crime, crushing corruption, delivering nothing but the best services and passing over R100 billion in pro-poor budgets. This is a total change for more than 16 million South Africans.

Change forced the ANC to realise that they cannot govern with impunity. This DA difference has come to be expected of us where govern and we would not have it any other way. South Africans deserve excellence in government and we hold ourselves to very high standards in pursuit of this.

These are not simply cherry-picked success stories. They are very real examples of the opportunities that exist for more than 16 million people who live under DA-led governments.

One of the greatest privileges one can ever be entrusted with is a mandate from the people to serve and it is these DA-led governments’ past two years of service to the residents of these great cities that we should all be celebrating today.

City Power to embark on Repair and Maintenance of City streetlights campaign

Today, I joined City Power officials to conduct maintenance and repairs of streetlights in Gallo Manor,
Sandton (Region E).
This forms part of the City’s efforts to address malfunctioning streetlights which have exposed residents
to safety and security concerns due to cable theft, illegal connections and vehicle collisions with
streetlight poles.
As part of our programme of bringing Diphetogo (fundamental change) to the City, in the 2018/19
financial year, the City has set aside R45 million for the installation of new public lighting city-wide,
including in our informal settlements, as well as an additional R20 million for the repairs and
maintenance of existing public lighting within the City.
This is a substantial increase from the R1 million allocated for this purpose in the previous financial year
(2017/18). During the same period, City Power installed 1, 245 streetlights across the City of
Johannesburg at a cost of R7million.
As part of Diphetogo, our residents will experience streetlights being installed and maintained across
the City in a way which makes our streets less desirable to criminals.
We must make Johannesburg shine brighter at night, and assist the work done by the JMPD and other
law enforcement authorities to make our communities safer.
Over the coming weeks, City Power will cross the length of breath of this City, from Midrand to Soweto
and Roodepoort to Alexandra, repairing streetlights that have defects, straightening poles that have
been knocked down in vehicle collisions, replacing covers that have been removed through vandalism,
replacing fittings and installing photo cells.
Photo cells play an important role in ensuring that streetlights are switched on during the night and
switched off during the day.
When photo cells are vandalized, the streetlights malfunction, leaving residents in the dark.
In some cases, street lights may stay on during the day when photo cells have been vandalized and
damaged. This puts a strain on the network as it has a negative impact on energy efficiency.
Residents are urged to report theft and vandalism of streetlights, cable theft and vehicle collision with
streetlight poles at 011 490 7911 or 011 490 7900 or 011 490 7504 or 011 490 7553 or at their nearest
police station.


DA-led Jozi to boost its Metro Policing by another 180 traffic wardens

On Thursday, 19 July, the Mayoral Committee of the City of Johannesburg passed a resolution to boost the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) with a further 180 traffic wardens.

This is part of “Diphetogo”, the City’s multi-party government’s initiative to improve the lives of our people by allocating a bigger share of funds only to priority projects that touch the lives of residents in a meaningful way.

– Johannesburg Mayor, Herman Mashaba

To this end, the City will be recruiting about 180 traffic wardens from the former Extended Public Works Program employees who were previously trained to perform traffic pointsman duties.

The Department of Public Safety identified the need to capacitate traffic wardens with additional powers in order to allow them to perform at optimum level.

The recruitment process will commence shortly and qualifying beneficiaries in terms of this first Traffic Warden Recruitment Program will be contacted to present themselves for the relevant processes. Once the recruitment program is completed, the City will see 180 traffic wardens servicing the residents of Johannesburg.

You can read the full story here


City to boost its Metro Policing by another 180 traffic wardens

On Thursday, 19 July, the Mayoral Committee of the City of Johannesburg passed a resolution to boost the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) with a further 180 traffic wardens.

The City is growing at a substantial rate of about 3 000 new residents per month, as more and more people from around the world choose to make Johannesburg their home, and this rapid growth in population has necessitated that the City increase and improve capacity in all areas in order to deliver services efficiently and effectively.

This is part of “Diphetogo”, the City’s multi-party government’s initiative to improve the lives of our people by allocating a bigger share of funds only to priority projects that touch the lives of residents in a meaningful way.

Public safety is essential in maintaining stable economic growth and attracting investment to the City, which is why JMPD has been spearheading the restoration of law and order across the City.

Since the launch of Operation Buya Mthetho, a multi-disciplinary operation aimed at restoring law and order, more than 500 un-roadworthy and illegal mini bus taxis have been impounded by JMPD.

The metro police’s K9 Narcotics and Tactical Unit has effected 1 193 arrests, recovering 123 illegal firearms, 136 kilograms of drugs and over 1000 hijacked vehicles.

Noting that safety challenges in the City remain a mammoth task, it is important to ensure that there are adequate policing resources to serve its residents.

To this end, the City will be recruiting about 180 traffic wardens from the former Extended Public Works Program employees who were previously trained to perform traffic pointsman duties.

The Department of Public Safety identified the need to capacitate traffic wardens with additional powers in order to allow them to perform at optimum level.

JMPD Chief of Police David Tembe has engaged with the Gauteng Provincial Government and Transport MEC Dr. Ismail Vadi has agreed to this initiative to further endow JMPD traffic wardens with the following powers:

In terms of the National Road Traffic Act of 1996, a traffic warden may, in addition to their usual traffic management functions;

  1. When in uniform, require a driver of any vehicle to stop such vehicle;
  2. Regulate and control traffic upon any public road and give such directions as may be necessary;
  3. Require any person to give his/ her name, address, and other particulars or any process which are required for identification purposes if the traffic warden suspects the person having committed an offence;
  4. In respect of any motor vehicle, demand the owner, operator or driver to produce any documents as may be prescribed in terms of the Act.

The recruitment process will commence shortly and qualifying beneficiaries in terms of this first Traffic Warden Recruitment Program will be contacted to present themselves for the relevant processes. Once the recruitment program is completed, the City will see 180 traffic wardens servicing the residents of Johannesburg.

In closing, I wish to extend my sincere gratitude to MEC Vadi for accepting our application and extending the above powers to the City of Johannesburg as this allows us to bring back the Rule of Law to the City.

MEC Vadi’s assistance is a perfect example of the kind of intergovernmental relations that we wish to have.


DA-led Jozi affects major drug bust in Eldorado Park

Following a tip-off on Friday 8 June 2018, the Johannesburg Metro Police Department’s (JMPD) K9-Unit took swift action and uncovered a total of 554 Mandrax tablets and six bags of Mandrax powder at a drug house in Eldorado Park, Extension 9.

We have been receiving multiple complaints about the blatant drug dealing in Eldorado Park and our JMPD K9-Unit has been monitoring the situation undercover. We knew it was just a matter of time before this drug bust will be made.

 – Public Safety MMC Michael Sun

No suspects have been arrested, but investigation continues and the police are confident that suspects will be apprehended soon. They have also urged that anyone with information relating to this case to contact the SAPS or JMPD on (011) 375 5911.

The ANC may not be the government in 2019, coalitions are the future for SA

Joint press statement by
Leaders of Opposition Parties
Mmusi Maimane
Leader of the Democratic Alliance
Mosiuoa Lekota
Leader of the Congress of the People
Rev. Kenneth Meshoe
Leader of the African Christian Democratic Party
Dr Pieter Groenewald
Leader of the Freedom Front Plus
Today, we as leaders of opposition political parties met here in Johannesburg to assess the performance of the past year in government, where we collectively govern the cities of Tshwane, Johannesburg and Nelson Mandela Bay based on our broad coalition agreement signed in August 2016.
We agreed on a number of shared issues as follows.
Firstly, we are unanimous in our view that the ANC cannot self-correct, and is not fit to lead our country. The ANC’s national conference later this month is to elect the next president of the ANC, not the next president of South Africa. In fact, whoever is elected as the next ANC president is immaterial. There is no saving the ANC. It has become a patronage network that rewards and promotes corruption, and ignores the plight of our people. It is time for South Africa to remove the ANC once and for all – and that is our collective goal.
In this light, we will not allow the ANC to claim back power in cities where the voters rejected them, as they attempted to do with spurious Motions of No Confidence in both Johannesburg and Tshwane. Those motions were defeated, and rightly so. The will of the people must always prevail.
Where we do govern in coalition, we are hard at work in showing South Africans that there is an alternative to the ANC, and that alternative is a coalition-led government taking office at the Union Buildings in 2019.
All the parties to the broad coalition, while we may differ on many things, agree on the following set of shared values which guide us in government:

  • Zero tolerance for corruption;
  • Constitutionalism and the Rule of Law;
  • Commitment to delivering quality services to all, especially the poor; and
  • Non racialism.

Make no mistake, governing in coalition has its challenges, which we have faced over the past 15 months. -But despite our challenges, we are committed to working together to bring change to lives of South Africans;
Indeed, we have seen progress where we govern.
In Tshwane, since taking office, 23 000 EPWP work opportunities have been created, bringing hope and empowerment to those left behind. The mayoral mansion has been sold for R5.1 million rand, which will be used to build houses for poor residents. 2804 title deeds have been handed over already, and a further 6000 title deeds are scheduled to be handed over in 2018. Plans are in place to extend the reach of the City’s bus service, A Re Yeng, into high density areas in a bid to provide a safe, affordable, accessible and reliable transport system for those away from economic opportunity. Almost R1.5 billion rand has been budgeted for transport over the next 3 years. An Anti-Cable Theft Unit was established this year, to deal with the criminality that hampers the provision of reliable water and electricity to our people
In Johannesburg, we’ve established an anti-corruption unit, headed up by former Gauteng Hawks Head, Gen. Shadrack Sibiya. To date, this unit has exposed over R 2 billion in corruption in the City. The City of Johannesburg currently has 2469 open investigations – resulting in approximately 500 arrests and the suspension of 100 officials – into a number of issues including corruption, fraud, theft, and hijacked buildings. The associated monetary value of these ongoing investigations is R16.2 billion, proving the City has lost vast amounts of money to corruption under the previous administration.
We have launched the Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) K-9 unit whose focus has been on the war on drugs and other related crimes such including theft and robbery. The K-9 Unit has:

  • Arrested 195 persons for the possession of drugs;
  • Arrested 205 persons for the possession of a stolen motor vehicle;
  • Arrested 46 people for hijacking; and
  • Arrested 39 people for the possession of an unlicensed firearm;

Transport within the City has been a long-standing challenge, with hundreds of thousands of residents requiring access to reliable public transport. The City has thus increased Metrobus’s capacity by 50%, adding 200 new buses to its fleet, providing residents with greater access to transport.
The City has purchased 28 new state-of-the-art fire engines, at a total cost of R189 million, and employed an additional 160 firefighters to enhance the capacity of its Emergency Management Services (EMS).
In Nelson Mandela Bay, in the administration’s first budget, 90% has been allocated to previously disadvantaged individuals and communities, ensuring that those left behind are afforded equal access to opportunity and the playing field is levelled.
The City’s Capex rate is at 93%, and boasts a 93.7% revenue collection rate – the best financial position the metro has been in for over 7 years. Confidence in the government of Nelson Mandela Bay has risen in just one year, from the second lowest trusted metro in the country, to the second highest – a real vote of confidence in the coalition-led government.
To create a safer Nelson Mandela Bay, the City’s first Metro Police Service was established. This world class service consists of 114 well-trained officers, with two satellite offices in Bethelsdorp and KwaNobuhle. The fight against crime in Nelson Mandela Bay is well underway.
Before the coalition-led government came to office, 35% of all bucket toilets in SA were in Nelson Mandela Bay. We have eradicated over 4000 already, and have committed to eradicating all bucket toilets by the end of 2017.
One of Nelson Mandela Bay’s flagship projects, Operation Buyisa Isidima, was launched in 2017 with a focus on fixing the housing crisis and giving people title to their homes. This has seen the handover of more than 2000 title deeds in a fair and transparent manner. The project seeks to address the housing backlog – currently standing at 80 000 – and to root out corruption in the housing list process
Indeed, 2016 was a watershed moment for South Africa, as a new era of coalition politics was ushered in when South Africa rejected the ANC in favour of change in major cities across the nation.
Come 2019, we will work towards building the alternative: a coalition government at national level that represents all South Africans and is committed to fighting corruption, delivering services and creating jobs for all.

JMPD cracks down on drug syndicate

On 23 November, the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department’s K9 Narcotic Tactical Unit (JMPD K9) caught three suspects in the act of dealing controlled medical substances in Sandton.
The JMPD K9 officers received information from the Crime Intelligence Unit regarding a syndicate dealing in embalming compound, which is a controlled medical substance. Police had been tracking the three male suspects for a week and finally arrested them during a drop-off at the Nelson Mandela Square in Sandton. R400 000 worth of embalming compound was seized.
The suspects are facing criminal prosecution for possession of controlled substances in contravention of the Medicines and Related Substance Act 101 of 1965, and are being detained at the Sandton Police Station.

We will continue to crack down on all criminal syndicates in Johannesburg, and teach criminals that they are not welcome in our City.
– Mayor of the City of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba

#SAACrisis: Billboard must go back up or face legal action

The Democratic Alliance’s legal counsel has written to Primedia Outdoor in order to demand that our billboard, which highlights the ANC-led government’s misuse and abuse of the people’s money, be reinstated by close of business today. Should they fail to reinstate the billboard we will approach the High Court to get judicial adjudication on this matter.
On Monday, 23 October 2017, the billboard was unlawfully removed by Primedia and/or the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA), who own the site on which the billboard is mounted.
The reasons for the removal of the billboard appear to be either a punishment for the convening of a lawful and constitutional gathering, and/or concern with the content of the advertisement.  Neither reason can justify PRASA and/or Primedia’s conduct in removing the advertisement.
From the time the DA’s Activists arrived on site to unveil the billboard, PRASA officials became hostile to the extent that they deployed extra security personnel to remove us, despite the fact that we had legal authorisation from the SAPS and JMPD to gather for the event.
It is clear that the ANC has been deeply shaken by truth told by our billboard and have therefore used PRASA as a soldier in their war of hiding the truth from millions of South Africans who pass through Park Station on a daily basis.
The ANC can no longer fight its battles through legitimate means such as offering the people of South Africa with a vision and hope. The DA has already started the work of paving the road towards a new beginning where, inter alia, the people’s money is invested in the economy so that our people can find work and put food on the table.

PRASA fighting ANC battles by removing SAA billboard

We learnt late yesterday that our billboard, which highlights the ANC-led government’s misuse and abuse of the people’s money, has been removed due to pressure from the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa.
We are therefore considering legal action against PRASA who we believe acted outside of their jurisdiction and authority by ordering that the billboard be removed.
PRASA, who owns the land outside Park Station where the billboard was erected rents the space to third parties. To now claim that we needed to seek permission from them for the billboard to be erected, despite the billboard not being owned by them, is opportunistic. Also, we were granted permission from the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department for our event and signed a contract with the billboard owner to rent the space.
Ahead of yesterday’s billboard unveiling, PRASA deployed extra security personnel to move our Activists from the public area under the billboard, and became forceful and disrespectful when we tried to explain the process we had followed with JMPD. Our event proceeded under the forceful watch of PRASA security and officials.
It is clear that the ANC has been deeply shaken by truth told by our billboard and have therefore used PRASA as a soldier in their war of hiding the truth from thousands of South Africans who pass through Park Station on a daily basis.
South Africans are begging for a new beginning and the billboard allows South Africans to make an informed decision when they head to the ballot box in 2019. Gone are the days of the ANC lying and looting without consequence.