Mpumalanga Premier, Refilwe Mtsweni-Tsipane will deliver her state of the province address at the provincial legislature in Mbombela on Friday morning.
Unemployment, infrastructure development, stimulating the province’s economy are some of the issues she is expected to touch on.
The address is also expected to take stock of what the provincial government has achieved so far and challenges ahead. It will set the tone for the provincial budget.
Mtsweni-Tsipane’s address takes place amid a number of challenges facing the province.
She is expected to outline her plans to assist struggling municipalities with some owing billions to Eskom.
Communities also want to hear the government’s plans to address massive infrastructure damages caused by heavy rains in some parts of the province.
Job losses as a result of the effects of COVID-19 is another challenge.
On Thursday, KwaZulu-Natal Premier, Sihle Zikalala delivered his SOPA address, where he said the provincial government has entered into talks with the national government to buy the SAPREF refinery in Isipingo, south of Durban.
This comes after the refinery, co-owned by BP and Shell, announced it would close at the end of next month.
The premier also announced that the Youth Empowerment Fund will increase from R 50 million to R 100 million this year.
While the provincial government envisages prospects of economic growth and job creation, the closure of the SAPREF oil refinery and Mara’s smart phone have been set-backs.
Zikalala says government should buy the refinery.
“We are disappointed by the decision of SAPREF to indefinitely suspend refinery operations in Durban by the end of March 2022. We are of the view that retaining the refinery especially the operations of refineries in our province is key for economic growth and job creation rather than solely relying on importing refined oil for that reason. We have called on the national government to buy SAPREF not only to protect jobs but to build the capacity of the state.” Additional reporting by Vusi Makhosini
SOPA KwaZulu-Natal | Premier Sihle Zikalala identifies 8 priorities for the province:
Growing Northern Cape’s economy:
Northern Cape Premier Zamani Saul delivered his fourth State of the Province Address in Upington.
He said addressing unemployment, corruption and lack of infrastructure development are amongst the provincial government’s top priorities. He said more needs to be done to grow the economy of the province.
“The issue of youth unemployment has reached crisis proportions now and that one of key focus areas for the provincial government. So we will have to work with an accelerated speed to ensure that we turn things around. There is massive work we’ve been doing from the government side, lots of investment in that front to make sure that we expose young people to work and also to ensure that they get the necessary skills to be absorbed in the labour market,” says Saul.
However, opposition parties in the Northern Cape say the State of the Province Address was a repetition of empty promises he made in previous years. They say the state of municipalities and healthcare services remain poor. The Democratic Alliance’s Joe McGluwa and Economic Freedom Fighters’ Aubrey Baartman say Saul must start acting against corruption and deliver services.
VIDEO: SOPA Northern Cape – Premier Dr Zamani Saul highlights the social and economic impact of COVID-19:
Investment opportunities in Limpopo:
Limpopo Premier Stan Mathabatha delivered the State of the Province Address at Lebowakgomo.
He outlined various investment opportunities earmarked for the province with the aim of creating jobs.
Mathabatha says the stimulation of the local economy will take precedence in this financial year, citing large-scale projects, including the rollout of broadband and developments in the Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone.
Mathabatha also focused on the Municipal Infrastructure Budget spending as a key factor in promoting service delivery. He also promised to hold individuals implicated in the Special Investigative Report accountable.