The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng is deeply concerned that 61% percent of the 2019/20 Gauteng Department of COGTA budget is allocated to salaries while only 39% of the budget is left for service delivery.
The department has been allocated a budget of R562 282 000 for the 2019/20 financial year of which the amount of R341 648 000 will be spent on employees’ salaries.
Concerned about the department not being able to execute its core mandate of providing support to municipalities with only 31% of the budget, I tabled written questions to the Gauteng MEC for COGTA, Lebogang Maile in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature. I wanted to find out about the department’s organogram and the number of employees.
According to MEC Maile, the department has a total number of 698 employees of which some are based at the head office while others are working in the municipalities.
The department has the following number of community development social services and support personnel; City of Johannesburg 85, Tshwane 90 , Ekurhuleni 81 and West Rand 126. Most of these employees are community development workers.
I will table further questions to MEC Maile to ascertain exactly what work is being done by these community development workers as well as their office addresses in different municipalities.
I will also conduct an oversight inspection to COGTA community development workers offices across the province to assess the work done by the community development social services personnel.
This department is failing in its core mandate to support municipalities with service delivery, infrastructure development, capacity building and financial management.
Some of our municipalities namely; Merafong Local Municipality, West Rand District Municipality and Emfuleni Local Municipality are bankrupt and struggling to deliver basic services as well as settle its water and electricity debt, while the largest portion of the department’s budget will be spent on employees’ salaries instead on supporting these municipalities.