Byline: Andani Matumba

25 April 2022

An IDP meeting was held at Lilian Ngoyi Center in Secunda on Thursday, 21 April 2022. The meeting started later than expected due to the Eskom scheduled level 4 load shedding.

In his opening speech, the Executive Mayor of GMM, Cllr Nhlakanipho Zuma said the population growth in GMM is 3.3% and the economy is growing at 1%, therefore it indicates that we are growing poorer than richer and therefore it causes a lot of problems because people end up with magnitude or a massive rate of unemployment and most of them are unable to pay for services towards the municipality.

GMM Executive mayor, Cllr. Hlakanipho Zuma

He emphasized his hope for the GSDM IDP to integrate projects which will boost the economic growth of GSDM.

In his Integrated Development Plan presentation, GSDM Executive Mayor, Cllr Walter Mngomezulu, the district municipality has in terms of water quality testing set up a laboratory in Ermelo.

GSDM has further dedicated yellow fleet in the form of graders and water tankers so that we can support the seven municipalities to maintain their roads.

The yellow fleet is said to be shared between all local municipalities which fall under GSDM and bookings will have to be made for maintenance purposes via the Municipal Manager’s office.

GSDM Executive Mayor, Walter Mngomezulu addressing the GMM community members at Lilian Ngoyi Center

Cllr Mgomezulu relayed a request for GSMD to the local municipalities to meet them half way in terms of fuel since the district deploys the yellow plant with its resources and employees but since petrol went up, then it is best that local municipalities meet them half way.

Ermelo Airfield is also reported to be converted into an airport.

Though the airport will not be used for commercial purposes, it will be used by key sectors such as agriculture for the purposes of export.

Revenue will also be generated through refueling by private aircraft owners.

Cllr Mngomezulu further stated that this is a catalyst project for the district development strategy.

“We can look at activities on the ground from an aerial view which would also contribute towards combating crime in the province because the Intelligence Services will also come on board”.

Mr. Jackpot Ndzinisa from ward 17 in Embalenhle making suggestion to the district Mayor after his IDP presentation to GMM and its community.

The Executive Mayor also urged community members to develop themselves towards obtaining skills that are scarce in the district because the district normally has to outsource skills from elsewhere, while making an example by the shortage of town planners in the province.

Therefore we cannot be a municipality that is dependent on indigent grants for survival.

Our strive is to be a model city of excellence.

Mr Jackpot Ndzinisa from Ward 17 made a suggestion to the district for the road infrastructure funds to be increased because the recent rains have clearly left a lot of damage on the roads.

Mr. Bheki Shabalala, a ward committee member from ward 12 said, “The district must make it a habit to comply with the health bylaws and send inspectors to shops around the district to inspect and assess compliance.

He further stated that foreigners sleep at the back of the shop where the food and stock are kept as well as the preparation of the food which poses a health hazard because it is not in compliance to our health regulations.

Shabalala also suggested that the municipality must put in place measures to ensure shared wealth between outsiders and locals in such a way that half a fraction of the shops within a municipality must be local and the other half can be shared between foreigners.