/ 17 January 2008

DA sends ‘wish list’ to Gauteng premier

A ”wish list” of proposals that could improve service delivery has been sent to the Gauteng premier, the Democratic Alliance said on Thursday.

Spokesperson and member of the provincial legislature Jack Bloom compiled the ”wish list”.

It has been sent to Premier Mbhazima Shilowa, and includes the actions Bloom believes would improve service delivery.

Bloom suggested that Shilowa should:

  • fire non-performing members of the executive committee;

  • ensure provincial ministers answer tough questions in the legislature;

  • remove bureaucratic obstacles that hamper job creation;

  • improve anti-corruption probes in all departments; and

  • ensure Gauteng gets a fair share of the national budget to deliver services to the fastest-growing population in South Africa.

To provincial finance minister Paul Mashatile, Bloom suggested that:

  • Mashatile refrain from eating at expensive French restaurants at the government’s expense and that he answer questions about his spending on a government credit card.

Provincial transport minister Ignatius Jacobs was asked to:

  • build more roads to reduce traffic gridlock;

  • upgrade MetroRail rather than build the ”fishy” Soweto monorail; and

  • reinstate maintenance contracts at hospitals so that lifts and generators don’t fail.

Provincial health minister Brian Hlongwa could:\

  • computerise hospital files and hire enough pharmacists to reduce long hospital queues;

  • save 5 000 babies a year by introducing dual AZT and nevirapine treatment for HIV-positive mothers;

  • pay HIV/Aids counsellors and health non-governmental organisations on time;

  • get a fair share of the national health budget (Gauteng has a larger population than KwaZulu-Natal but received R2-billion less than that province during the past year, said Bloom).

Provincial education minister Angie Motshekga could:

  • ensure textbooks are in schools on time; and

  • reward good teachers and throw the bad ones thrown out.

Bloom suggested that the provincial housing minister, Nomvula Mokonyane, should:

  • Admit that housing all shack-dwellers is not possible by 2014;

  • use professional building contractors rather than political favourites to ensure that good quality houses are built; and

  • investigate corruption in housing allocations to ensure that shack-dwellers at the top of the allocation list receive houses first.
  • Bloom suggested that provincial community safety minister Firoz Cachalia:

    • use his influence to clean up ”scandal-plagued” metro police;

    • reinstate the child protection units; and

    • allocate funds to prevent problems such as non-working police radios.

    Provincial minister for local government Qedani Dorothy Mahlangu, was asked to:

    • collect R15-billion in outstanding debts that could be spent on service delivery;

    • provide provincial indigent policy to assist those who can’t repay debts; and

    • push for water and electricity rebates for schools so they can spend more money on improving pass rates.

    The provincial minister for agriculture, conservation and the environment, Khabisi Mosunkutu, should combat environmental threats like sewerage pipes that run into the Vaal River.

    Bloom suggested that the provincial minister for social development, Kgaogelo Lekgoro, could:

    • construct much-needed old-age homes in townships;

    • target real outcomes for grants-in-aid to NGOs; and

    • improve drug rehabilitation and halfway houses for treated addicts.

    — Sapa