No fewer than 55 municipalities have been identified as distressed or dysfunctional, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Minister Zweli Mkhize says.
Mkhize announced on Tuesday that he would be deploying technical capacity experts who would provide support to municipalities in their core functions.
“The focus of the teams will be to provide infrastructure planning, delivery, operation and maintenance, infrastructure management, financial management as well government and administration issues,” he said.
Cogta identified that 31% of the country’s municipalities were dysfunctional, while 31% were almost dysfunctional. Only 7% of municipalities were well functioning and 31% were reasonably functional, Mkhize said.
Refusing to name municipalities identified as in distress, Mkhize said that the programme would be rolled out to 27 district municipalities.
“In the short term, the investment in skills development in municipalities will also continue to be a priority,” he added. Cogta would emphasise youth development as part of its skills development.
Youth apprenticeship and youth graduate programmes which offered bursaries for artisan placement would also form part of skills development, he said.
In 2016, a government performance index by research and advocacy group Good Governance Africa found that nine of the 10 worst performing municipalities were in the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, City Press reported.
The newspaper wrote that Good Governance Africa had identified that municipalities were found wanting on the delivery of services. These included water and electricity, sanitation, refuse removal, housing, health facilities and access to police. —News24