KZN SOPA: Province facing economic collapse - Francois Rodgers

DA PL says unemployment rate at 43,4%, no money in govt coffers, water delivery failing in Durban

KZN SOPA: DA calls for real solutions and job creation as province faces economic collapse

26 February 2024

As Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube prepares to deliver her State of the Province Address (SOPA) the DA in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) expects her to provide solutions to the province’s growing fiscal challenges and outline how the ANC government will build a sustainable economy centered around job creation.

On Wednesday, the DA expects to hear how the Premier will address the current socio-economic inequality within KZN and an ever-growing expanded unemployment rate of 43.4%.

What we definitely do not want to hear are more of the empty promises that don’t bring change. Year in and year out KZN’s people have had to endure big talk with little action.

There is no money in KZN’s coffers and the Premier needs to come up with real solutions - not ludicrous plans that are not likely to be implemented. This includes panic buttons and drones to deal with crime, when the province remains the country’s murder and rape capital.

KZN’s people to do not want to hear about so-called catalytic government projects when water delivery is failing in eThekwini, in a crisis that has now extended beyond the city’s northern areas. For the past six years, we have heard about turnaround strategies and water master plans. Deadlines have come and gone and the water crisis facing various parts of our province has only escalated.

KZN’s people also do not want to hear more empty promises about service delivery when Msunduzi Municipality - home to the province’s capital city of Pietermartizburg - continues to sponsor a soccer team to the tune of R27million despite a debt level of over a R1billion.

The people of our province deserve to hear the Premier’s plan on how to fix Education and Health, both of which are facing massive financial challenges that ultimately have a severe knock-on effect, with dire consequences for both departments. This includes a total contingent medico-legal liability estimated at R31billion.

On Wednesday, KZN’s people need to hear a solid intervention plan from the Premier. Promises and wish lists no longer cut it. We need a fiscal rescue plan centered around creating financial stability and building a growing economy that will finally address the challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment.

KZN is in desperate need of change after decades of ANC rule. On 29 May, the people of our province will have the opportunity to remove a government that has led our province to the brink of destruction and install a new administration – one that will rescue KZN.

Statement issued by Francois Rodgers, MPL - Leader of the DA in the KZN Legislature, 26 February 2024