Evaluating the government of the city of Cape Town and province of the W Cape
The performance of the City and Province of Cape Town points to many challenges that have to be attended to, but some work has been done. We rate the performance of the spheres of government and the officials as follows:
Premier gets an F
The Premier has acted in her usual boisterous manner, makes more dust than buildings. Great at criticising the failings of others, but not actually able to put together a coherent plan and leadership that put the Province on a new trajectory. She has gone to war with the people of Hout Bay and given financial incentives to various gimmicks, but not actually gone to engage the community on the challenges and the possible solutions. The Premier has shown herself incapable of building partnerships and reaching out to communities that do not support her . So the Province is more divided that it was in 2004, with the levels of inequality also increasing. The increasing divisions in the DA have also shown the inability of the Premier to manage a vibrant changing environment. She may have announced some gimmicks in the media, but has not been able to provide the required leadership.
Mayor gets a D
The mayor has provided a new sense of energy to the City and has been committed to action some of the ANC election campaign issues. She has also shown a greater willingness to address the challenges of the divided City, but has not been able to put a programme in place that actually brings with it tangible measures. She continues to be constrained by the liberals who are intent on maintaining white privilege in the Province, whilst giving empty promises to the new black voters of the DA. The New Year will show whether the gamble of De Lille to throw in her lot with the DA will have benefits for anyone else other than for De Lille
Safety and security Plato and JP Smith gets F grade
The MEC has in desperation tried to get the gangs to agree to sell drugs without shooting each other and the customers. This border on negativity and certainly does not provide the kind of leadership required. The Mayco member for safety and security has been equally ineffective, coming up with a new imported gadget every week, but the body count is rising. Again the fundamental flaw is their inability to consult and build partnerships with communities. The security heads are not able to address the safety challenges in the Cape Flats, electing instead to focus resources on the City Bowl area.
Public transport gets a D
The head of transport in the city Carlisle has shown more ability as a stand-up comedy in his recorded conversation, only concern is he is talking about people's lives that he was elected to serve. He is also the master of closing the door after the horse has bolted, with his disastrous management of the children school transport problem in George. The Mayco member for Transport has not done anything to distinguish himself in the area of public transport, but declare a dispute with National government. He has inherited a public transport focus of the DA THAT prioritises public transport for wealthier areas ahead of the cape Flats. He now intends to roll out the IRT to Camps Bay before the needs of Mitchells Plain or Khayelitsha .
The MEC has underperformed every previous Government leaders in providing housing, blaming National Government for his failures, but not being able to present a coherent plan. The Mayco member has done slightly better in his focus and orientation to housing needs .He has overseen the Funding allocated by National Government to do upgrade in communities.
Utility services C
This is one of the better performing Mayco members, who have seen the Mayor, try to capitalise on her area of responsibility. She has taken it upon herself to implement the ANC vision and plan for providing services to backyarders. This raises her points as she shows herself to be able to rise above party politics.
The MEC who said he know nothing about education when he was appointed, has confirmed that with his actions. He is a typical case of DA cadre deployment, and is really not doing anything to close the huge inequalities between the rich and poor schools, or the black and old model C schools. He has stood by as Premier comes up with gimmicks and throwing money at the problem, to deflect her inability to come up with a coherent plan to address the educational problems. He is destroying a generation of township learners, and delaying the addressing of the educational deficit.
Economic development F
The MEC has stood by and watched the premier destroy the partnerships with Business and Labour that is essential for a vibrant economy. Money is spent on jazzy high profile tourism offers that benefit white sections of the economy ahead of the manufacturing sector that benefits township jobs, refusing to promote the Proudly South African campaign because it is a National government programme. The Mayco member has no idea of the real economy, losing out on R 100 000 support from National Government for Atlantis, where there are urgent problems. Her steward ship of the green economic development has seen her contract her responsibility to an agency, which is battling to come up with a coherent plan. They both seem to be ideologically driven with no appreciation of what the real economy needs in a post Global economic crisis era.
The absence of a coherent health plan is obvious with the declining level of services. The leader of the DA in the Province seems to be more directed at the NHI as he tries to do a Zille by criticising everyone else. He oversees Zille lotto HIV programme, where she throws money at the problems in the absence of a coherent programme. The Province is still the leading province in respect of expenditure on Botox and the Premier has started this craze at the expense of prioritisation of spending on reproductive health care.
This rating for the different levels of government officials give the picture of an ineffective administration that is not able to overcome the social deficit and instead sees growing inequalities and poverty in the W Cape .
Statement issued by COSATU W Cape Provincial Secretary, Tony Ehrenreich, December 15 2011
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