Residents of villages serviced by the Kagisano-Molopo municipality in the North West are calling for the dissolution of the municipality. They say political infighting and factionalism have rendered the municipality useless.
Residents also claim service delivery has been severely compromised because of greed, which led to the misuse of municipal funds and irregular awarding of tenders.
Five North West municipalities have been labelled problematic by Premier Bushy Maape.
The Kagisano Molopo Local municipality is one of them. The municipality made headlines in 2019, when it was placed under administration by the provincial government, a decision which was later overturned by the court.
Reports by the Auditor General show the municipality is in dire financial straits and on the brink of collapse. Complaints have started to surface from residents, among them is the Goats Distribution Project, where beneficiaries claim they never received any goats as promised.
The municipality also purchased trees worth R18 000 for Arbor Day for schools and preschools that did not exist.
Video – Moses Kotane Local Municipality residents lament poor service delivery:
Similarly, concerns were raised when the municipality spent R6 million to purchase mobile offices while renovating its municipal building.
Over the course of the year, angry citizens organized a number of protest marches, which they claim had no effect on improving services. They now demand the dissolution of the local council.
One resident says, “Even if they can change the leadership that would be for the second time and it did not work out. it’s better if they dissolve the municipality then we will get our services from Vryburg.”
“if political parties can be taken out of municipalities and instead should be governed by communities. It’s been a long that political parties have been leading in municipalities but there are no developments,” adds another resident.
The community believes that fighting over tenders is the main reason for instability within the council.
One resident claims, “In Ganyesa, fights left and right, if I want to sell sweets and I go on a tender, it’s a fight. People want tenders here. Tenders here, people they fight, then people die for tenders. We have nothing here, our businesses it tuckshops, it’s Bangladesh and Ethiopia, no big shops here.”
In an effort to better service delivery, the provincial government ended the contract of their municipal manager, Olaotse Bojosinyana, amid allegations of maladministration. Not everyone in the community is convinced that this was the right decision.
“We would love the expert to come and investigate, we trust Bojosinyana, he is delivering services to the people for example look at the roads constructed in Kagisano, we take him as our leader and on that note, we are saying Rre Bojosinyana must come and serve us,” says Bojosinyana.
Bojosinyana however refused to vacate his office and turned to the court instead. A move that does not sit well with the ANC’s provincial structures.
ANC provincial chairperson Nono Maloyi says, “The information at our disposal is that his contract has been terminated meaning if he goes to that building and occupies that building forcefully so, that thing is you cannot just go into a government building and decide to occupy it surrounded by some bouncers we hope that our security forces will be able to intervene that people do not do as they wish.”
While many still believe that the municipality can still be saved, others say it is better to have the council dissolved and start afresh.
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