REPORT CONTINUES FROM: P1
chief financial officer. Former Local Government MEC Mlibo Qoboshiyane later rejected Nair's appointment and chartered accountant Trevor Harper was appointed when the recruitment process was restarted.
Yesterday's conference for academics and post-graduate students from NMMU, Rhodes University, the University of Fort Hare and Walter Sisulu University, focused on various research papers pertaining to the development of the Eastern Cape economy.
Gordhan said later he wanted municipalities that had capabilities. "There are rules that govern how appointments should be made in accordance with the law.
"If, despite the rules, wrong appointments are made, we must get involved.
"We have started a process of writing to MECs, telling them that they must write to the municipalities with unqualified officials in posts of senior managers and declare those appointments invalid," he said.
Over the past six to eight weeks, Gordhan's office has embarked on an extensive study of the 278 municipalities in the country to determine which municipalities were doing well and which ones were battling to provide basic services to residents.
He said it was found that a third of the municipalities were doing well, a third were doing relatively okay and another third were doing "terribly".
Municipalties that were thriving were those with political stability, with the "right kind of relationship between political office bearers and officials, each knowing their boundaries", and with proper record-keeping and financial management.
"Communication with communities is crucial for good governance...
"A municipality right here on your doorstep - the Sarah Baartman District Municipality [previously Cacadu] — knows its business and goes the extra mile to keep communities informed," Gordhan said.
"There's a municipality that has an SMS system. It has a database with the numbers of residents, so if there are disruptions of any kind, they're informed. "It helps with expectations and planning."
He implored the university students and academics to share their research with the government to assist in providing better services to the communities.
"There's a need to develop a new brand of professionalism and bringing the right skills to assist municipalities," Gordhan said. Asked what his department was doing to ensure that the infrastructure of municipalities, like the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, was up to scratch to not only keep business happy, but also to attract new investors, he said the metro had an obligation to ensure that business had proper services.
Gordhan said the interdepartmental team set up by President Jacob Zuma before the May 7 elections was going to respond to the Bay's water and electricity infrastructure challenges.
"We've only been in office for 15 weeks. Give us a few weeks and we'll come up with our concrete plan and results," he said.
Article by: Rochelle De Kock.
Article Source: HERALD (Morning Final)