DA debates Motion on the State of Financial Governance in Gauteng

The following speeches were delivered in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature today by DA Gauteng Shadow MEC on Finance, Adriana Randall MPL and DA Gauteng Spokesperson on Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Graham Gersbach MPL, during a debate on the state of financial governance within the Gauteng Provincial Government.

Adriana Randall MPL

“Gauteng’s financial state: critical but stable”

• In an economic slump with tight public finances, government needs new ways of responding to local realities. It should orchestrate efforts throughout society which actively support people’s struggles to get ahead, not just enable them to get by;
• Provincial departmental budgets need to be fully aligned with the economic recovery and growth plan which has the strategic objectives of restoring growth, building a globally competitive economy and investing in the people of Gauteng;
• A DA government will remove the classic barriers for business formation and growth – namely access to funding, restrictive labour laws and red- tape. This is one of the most effective vehicles to stimulate economic growth and to create jobs.
• The key to achieving successful procurement reform is to embrace technological advancements which streamline processes and are based on the principles of control, transparency and auditability.

The full speech can be obtained here.

Graham Gersbach MPL

“Audit reports expose Gauteng’s unsavoury financial practices”

• Funding on the Gauteng Urban Renewal Programme was found to be used for projects not fully aligned to business plans, by the Auditor General of South Africa;
• Integrated Transport Planning across Gauteng is way behind schedule with Ekurhuleni’s metro bus still not truly operational; and
• In human settlements, hostel conversions and the delivery of dignified housing has been sluggish. Stands are sold illegally, corruption plagues housing lists in the province and the budgets including conditional grant funding are underspent by the department and sent back to treasury.

The full speech can be obtained here.

Tembisa Residents Turn Violent Over Electricity Disconnections

Residents of Winnie Mandela in Tembisa north, Ekurhuleni, took to the streets last night burning down the local clinic and destroying 11 municipal vehicles’ as they vented their anger over the disconnection of illegal power connections.Graham Gersbach

The Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality (EMM) is currently carrying out a campaign to deal with illegal power connections that cost the Metro millions of rands every year.

Illegal connections are not only dangerous but they also impact negatively on the metro’s revenue collection – ultimately effecting service delivery.

While the DA condemns the violent protests in Winnie Mandela, the EMM has brought this situation upon itself by failing to electrify the rapidly expanding Winnie Mandela Section.

To further infuriate residents, EMM Mayor, Mondlie Gungubele – when visiting the area, allegedly informed residents that “we will fight you over illegal connections”, instead of providing a viable strategy to electrify the area.

Residents in Winnie Mandela who are connected and pay electricity are unfairly caught in the middle of this situation.

I will liaise with my fellow DA colleagues in Ekurhuleni to ensure that the EMM address the electricity supply in this area as a matter of urgency.
Media enquiries:
Graham Gersbach MPL
DA Constituency Head – Bronberg
060 556 4346

[Image source]

Clayville Ext 45 residents none the wiser about improved infrastructure

Gersbach-Graham1Gauteng MEC for Housing and Traditional Affairs, Jacob Mamabolo, has pronounced noble intentions to improve the living conditions of residents of Clayville Ext 45, Ekurhuleni, but has failed to provide detailed plans as to how this is to be done.


In a written reply, the MEC stated that 3 384 stands in Clayville Ext 45 were to be developed providing for 200 single residential RDP units, 1 704 High Density Walk-up units, 380 rental units and 1 100 GAP / FLISP units (for persons not qualifying for RDP or bonded units).


Beneficiaries of these plans include residents of the nearby Madelakufa 1 & 2 Informal Settlements, Freedom Square and applicants on the Tembisa housing waiting list.


Whilst the reply stated that schools, parks, medical facilities, roads and transport facilities were being planned – no detail of these facilities was provided.


The nearby Mpumelelo Primary School, designed for 1 800 learners, has an enrolment in excess of 2 300 yet is still housed in temporary facilities.


Gauteng Premier, David Makhura, mentioned in his State of the Province Address that Clayville Ext 45 is one of the areas included in the delivery of more than 100,000 housing units in the next 5 years.


However, there are still no details as to what is planned.


My colleague, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Education, Khume Ramulifho MPL, and I will address a public meeting on Wednesday, 4 March, 2015 at the Olifantsfontein Community Centre at 19h00 to provide feedback to the community on the DA’s education campaign.


Educational needs are critical to sustainable human settlements.


The DA will continue to ensure that the needs of the residents are addressed effectively and are not lost in the mists of cheap talk.


Media enquiries:
Graham Gersbach MPL
DA Spokesperson on Roads
060 556 4346


Bungled legal processes keep Gauteng’s roads in the dark

A service level agreement, to be signed in December 2014, ensuring the lights on Gauteng’s freeways would be adequately maintained has still not been ratified by the South African Roads Agency (SANRAL) and the Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport (GDRAT).Gersbach-Graham1


This was revealed in a Roads and Transport committee meeting held at the Provincial Legislature.


This agreement would ensure that SANRAL would repair and maintain lights on Provincial Roads including the R24 (Albertina Sisulu freeway) from Johannesburg to O.R Tambo International Airport and the Atlas Road off-ramp from the R21.


The lights on the R24 have not been working for close on a year now, and according to residents the lights on the Provincial section of the Atlas Road off-ramp been a problem for over 6 years.


Reasons given for the delay include:


  • The agreements have been referred back to both the Legal Departments of the Gauteng Provincial Government and SANRAL for further negotiation;
  • The “as built drawings” for the design of the Atlas Road off-ramp when the R21 was handed over by GDRAT to SANRAL were outdated and did not reflect the current configuration of this off ramp;
  • Sections of road inclusive of the P40 and the section to where the lighting type changes should have initially been handed over to SANRAL.


In the meantime, whilst GDRT and SANRAL sort out their past mistakes, and the legal departments are sitting on the draft agreement, no maintenance and repairs are being done to any lighting on provincial roads across Gauteng.


Residents therefore are at risk of motor vehicle accidents due to poor lighting – while crimes at off ramps like Atlas Road continue to escalate.
Media enquiries:
Graham Gersbach MPL
DA Spokesperson on Roads
060 556 4346