Mpumalanga municipalities fail to spend infrastructure grant leaving communities stranded without services
The Democratic Alliance of Mpumalanga (DA) will write to CoGTA MEC, Busisiwe Shiba, asking her to capacitate and help municipalities spend their infrastructure grant as residents are struggling with service delivery because of old and dilapidated infrastructure.
The recent Auditor-General report has mentioned that despite there being huge infrastructure backlogs in all municipalities across Mpumalanga, municipalities are still failing to utilize grants given by the national government for the purposes provided.
Over the past couple of years, Msukaligwa local municipality has become synonymous with infrastructure issues relating to water shortages, sewage leaks that run into the rivers and onto land, and issues around power outages. Numerous infrastructure backlogs resulted in the failure of the municipality to provide water to the residents of Sheepmoore, Skaapruiz, and parts of Lothair and Breyten.
In addition to the above, dilapidated sewage systems have resulted in sewage spills across the municipality and the resultant pollution of land and the water systems such as the Vaal River. It is from this perspective, the DA condemns the municipality’s underspending of the Regional Bulk Infrastructure Grant by 95% as reported on by the Auditor-General in the 2019/20 audit of local municipalities.
Recently, the residents of Bushbuckridge local municipality took to the streets in protest of water, issues with roads and bridges. Water scarcity has always been and remains an issue in the municipality, despite the construction of the R1 billion Inyaka Dam. It is from this perspective that the DA condemns this municipality’s underspending of the Water Services Infrastructure Grant by 65% as reported on by the Auditor-General in the 2019/20 audit of local municipalities.
Given the above inadequacies in these local municipalities, the DA will write to the MEC of CoGTA, Busisiwe Shiba, asking her to strengthen the capacity of these two local municipalities and ensure that they utilize all of the monies which are meant to improve service delivery