Salga gives unified public service thumbs-up

The South African Local Government Association (Salga) has come out in support of a unified public service across all three spheres of government.

On Thursday, the final day of its conference in Midrand, Salga adopted a resolution in favour of a single public service for national, provincial and municipal government.

Public Service and Administration Minister Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi addressed the conference on the topic on Tuesday, saying it would improve service delivery.

The question of how such a scheme would be put into effect prompted much discussion among delegates.

Salga declared it would listen to local communities in order to keep in touch with popular opinion.

On Monday, the first day of the conference, President Thabo Mbeki called on Salga to seek ways of anticipating tension in communities early on.

Also in response to Mbeki’s address, Salga declared that municipalities should be governed in an honest, transparent, ethical and accountable manner.

The association — nicknamed ”a trade union for councillors” — also undertook to develop the necessary infrastructure and facilities for the successful hosting of the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

The conference heard that the local organising committee of the event is discussing the possibility of building ”fan parks”.

These are centres were soccer fans can watch games live on big screens if they have no tickets for the game. Eighteen million fans were attracted to such centres at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

Other declarations committed Salga to eradicating the bucket system of sanitation this year, providing clean water for all by 2008 and electricity for all by 2010.

Salga undertook to support municipalities in the appointment of skilled and qualified officials.

Johannesburg Mayor Amos Masondo was on Thursday elected unopposed for another term as national chairperson of Salga. — Sapa

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