The Democratic Alliance (DA) in North West welcomes the decision to withdraw a council item recommending that a new luxury vehicle of R600 000 must be procured for the Speaker, Washington Ntozini.

In the council meeting today, Wednesday 28 February 2018,  the Speaker said he was not aware of the proposal. We are surprised that he, in his capacity as Speaker was unaware of this. It seems as if the left hand is not knowing what the right hand is doing in the ANC.

This purchase was allegedly supported by the Premier, Supra Mahumapelo’s office, who only put a ceiling price on the transaction, instead of asking the struggling City of Matlosana to abstain from buying this car.

We were opposed to this proposal from the start as it would be a huge slap in the face of each resident here who has to struggle without proper service delivery. For weeks now, refuse removal workers were striking because they do not have proper safety gear to perform their duties.

Water leakages have escalated and residents are without water for days – while the Department of Water and Sanitation has only one vehicle to service the whole of the Kosh area (Klerksdorp, Orkney, Stilfontein and Hartbeesfontein). There is no money for repairs and to do basic maintenance or infrastructure upgrades here.

The area is battling with sewage overflows, huge potholes, weed-overgrown areas, poor infrastructure, unreliable services and an uncaring ANC council.

Vehicles for executive members is not illegal but would’ve been a huge travesty, taking into account the dire state of the municipality’s coffers.

This was an unnecessary luxury item that will see communities suffering even more as funds are directed towards such a non-essential purchase.

Last year, the Executive Mayor, Maetu Kgaile also purchased an R600 000 vehicle. That came after one of her drivers crashed Council’s expensive Mercedes Benz during a private errand to Johannesburg. This matter is still pending before the Provincial Public Accounts Committee.

We are constantly reminding the Speaker and all other members of the executive of the contents and intent of Circular 82 as issued by National Treasury in relation to cost containment measures. This states that the accounting officer of a municipality is responsible for managing the financial administration and must for this purpose take all reasonable steps to ensure that all resources of the municipality are used effectively, efficiently and economically.

Our communities are in dire need of proper service delivery. They deserve better. Only the DA can bring Total Change and a new beginning to the people of Matlosana.