Oudtshoorn, 09 February 2016 – The residents of the Greater Oudtshoorn can brace themselves for improved service delivery in the next two weeks as Five (5) Municipalities from the Eden District have pledged to support the Oudtshoorn Municipality which is currently under administration since in August 2015.
The Mayors and Municipal Managers of George, Mossel Bay, Knysna and Bitou municipalities have on Monday, 8 February 2016 under the guidance of the Eden District Municipality’s Executive Mayor, Cllr. Wessie van der Westhuizen converged in the Eden District Municipality’s office in George to pledge support to the financially stressed Oudtshoorn Municipality. The Administrator of the Greater Oudtshoorn, Mr. Kam Chetty and acting Municipal Manager, Mr. Allen Paulse attended the meeting.
The Oudtshoorn Municipality has in the recent months been inundated with a plethora of complaints from the public that among others include lack of delivery of basic services such as cleansing, potholes, water shortages in rural areas etc. Some of the challenges facing the Oudtshoorn Municipality these Municipalities discussed include the skills shortages in among other the finance, supply chain management and human resources.
During the meeting, the local municipalities pledged to give following to the Oudtshoorn Municipality;
- Financial support, (two Municipalities pledged funding of up to R 100 000)
- Secondment of staff members to Oudtshoorn at the cost of the pledging municipalities to help with the cleaning of the town and repair of the potholes
- Specialized and highly technical skilled staff also to assist during the upcoming Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees (KKNK)
- There may also be face-lifting of some of the KKNK venues through painting, cleaning etc.
Mr. Allen Paulse who requested this support expressed his appreciation of the gesture made by these neighbouring Municipalities. “This action which certainly enhances intergovernmental relation between the Municipalities in the Eden District is commendable and the residents can be assured of improved services as the surrounding municipalities will continue to render such support with the availability of their resources,” Paulse said.
“Soon the citizens will see a vigorous cleaning up of the town – equipment such as trucks and loading machinery will be made available from other towns to help get Oudtshoorn clean,” he added.
Meanwhile, Cllr van der Westhuizen, the Eden District Municipality’s Mayor said the district Municipality would pay for some of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) to assist in this huge clean-up campaign.
“In a situation like this, we can either fold hands looking at the down plunging down to the ground or we can join hands and work together and restore hope in the beautiful heart of the Klein Karoo,” said van der Westhuizen.
“I would like to offer my hearty gratitude to these Municipalities who proved it to me that a person is a person through other people,” van der Westhuizen concluded.