OFFICIAL WEBSITE OF THE CITY OF JOHANNESBURG     
Joburg
TwitterFacebookYoutubeFlickrLinkedinGoogle

Tariffbanner 2017

IDP Banner


IAR 

Blog

itl click thru


Regionalisation


newsroom-110x300-banner-1

  strip2




emergency blue

AMBULANCE, FIRE & JMPD
011 375 5911; 10177


general blue
ANTI- FRAUD HOTLINE
0860-JOBURG


PAIA, 2000 (Act 2 of 2000) 


home > Speeches
 
other city news
State of the City Address 2002 Print E-mail
30 January 2003

Madam Speaker,
Members of the Executive Council
Members of the Provincial Legislature,
Members of the Mayoral Committee,
Fellow Councilors,
City Manager,
All Senior Managers,
Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Distinguished Guests,
The Media,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

On 14 December 2001, we bid each other farewell. We went our separate ways to recharge our batteries in order to come back full of new energy and eager to tackle the challenges of 2002.

We just completed our first year as a new Council.

When I stood before you in January 2001 we did not have a City Manager. We did not have senior staff in place. We were a new Council. Many of you were experiencing the role of serving your communities as a Councillor for the first time.

The complexities of creating a single administration from the old councils only began.

Much has happened in the last year, much of what has happened we all can be proud of. The face of our administration and the way we do business has changed beyond all recognition. A new way of budgeting and planning is in place. We have made significant changes in the way we assess rates. Free lifeline water is supplied to our communities - a solid foundation to build on.

However, that does not mean our first year was not without problems.

I am sure you all will agree that in this new year none of us will want to confuse the constructive right to criticize the policies and practices of this democratically elected council, with the destructive consistent undermining of our great city.

Let us all show our pride in our City, but not use patriotism to hide the genuine problems that face us in post-apartheid South Africa and post-apartheid Johannesburg. No one should use the need to constantly articulate our pride in our City to hide the weaknesses in service delivery.

We ALL must ask ourselves each time we feel the need to have the spotlight upon us, "What effect is this statement going to have on my country and city?" What perception am I creating? What is the economic effect of my statement?"

In this address I will answer the question,

"To what extent have we, the Council of the City of Johannesburg, been able to meet the commitments made in the Mayoral address of 30 January 2001?"

I will point out some of the constraints that have faced our administration and indicate the way in which these can be overcome. I will also identify other strategic and important projects that will be undertaken both in the last six months of this financial year and the work that needs to be done in the second half of 2002.

Madam Speaker, this City has a fascinating history that is characterised by contradictions.

It is a City of glass skyscrapers and informal settlements. A City of internationally recognised universities such as the Rand Afrikaans University and the University of the Witwatersrand but we also have high levels of illiteracy within our population.

It is a City of glittering abundance and extreme forms of poverty. It is a history of the rich North and poor South. These features are a product of our own history.

Our vision speaks of building an African World Class City.

A world-class City benchmarked against the best cities in the world. We have said that we seek to ensure a better quality of life for all our citizens.

We have committed ourselves to six strategic priorities and I believe we should consistently remember what they are. Economic Development and Job Creation; Safety and Security; Service Delivery Excellence - Batho Pele; Good Governance; Inner City rejuvenation, and the fight against HIV/AIDS. To build a City that meets the needs of all our people our guiding light is our Constitution, the highest law of our country.

Our Constitution states the objectives of Local Government - they are to:

  • Provide democratic and accountable government for local communities;
  • Ensure provision of services to communities in a sustainable manner;
  • Promote safe and healthy environments;
  • Encourage involvement of communities and community organisations in matters of local government; and
  • Strive within financial and administrative capacity to achieve the above.
Madam Speaker, it is important that we should remember our obligations to our people. I stand before you fully conscious that we are morally and legally bound to those who have elected us to this legislature. These are the masses of our people, most of who are poor and barely eke out a living.

It is these masses that on the 5th of December 2000 entrusted us, as Councilors, with the duty and responsibility to serve them to the best of our ability and to the optimum capacity of the resources available.

They trust that given our many years of relentless struggle against injustices of the past, we will display the same commitment, courage, vision and leadership in ridding our communities of the legacy of apartheid.

We must ask ourselves "How far have we gone to realise this?"

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION is the cornerstone of much that we do. In order to enhance local democracy it is critical citizens or residents of the City of Johannesburg gain greater understanding of the work that is being undertaken by both elected representatives and the professional City officials as well as administrators.

Any city that invest in empowering its citizens will tend to reap better rewards through meaningful participation in that the more informed the residents are the more democracy we experience in practice.

Public participation should also be understood to be a step taken to ensure that the political representatives learn from the people and vice versa.

The City of Johannesburg is committed to extending, strengthening and deepening public participation in matters of local government by involving both the local communities and a variety of community and civil society organisations in these processes.

Today I have tabled a report to this Council that details the extent of such participation since the 5th of December 2000 elections. This document should be carefully considered with a view to improving our future performance.

We need more public participation. The City can do more by learning from the mistakes and developing further from the positive gains of the past.

2030

Let us now turn to our long-term vision, the creation of an African World Class City. Central to our vision is the 2030 STRATEGY.

On the 19th of February I will be launching Johannesburg 2030, our new City Development Strategy.

Joburg 2030's starting point is that a better city should be defined as a city that offers an increase in the standard of living and better quality of life for all the City's inhabitants. This can only be achieved via sustainable economic development, which will be achieved by increasing the efficiency of the economy at a micro economic level as well as supporting key growth sectors.

The new strategy has three main implications for Council in the years ahead:

Firstly, we must redimension the Council away from being essentially an administrator and service provider to being an agent for economic growth.

This will be achieved not only by placing new projects and activities on Council's agenda but importantly by realigning existing activities and projects to contribute to sustainable growth.

The second implication of 2030 is that the time horizon for creating a better city is realistically a 30-year time horizon.

The types of inefficiencies highlighted in the report, such as changing the trajectory of the economy and changing the skills of the labour force cannot yield results in anything but the long term, hence while short-term delivery must continue and be improved upon, many of the benefits of 2030 will only be enjoyed by the next generation.

This places pressure on all of us to plan strategically so as to show forward momentum in the short term without undermining our long-term vision.

The third and final implication of 2030 for the Council is that we will need to increase our interactions with the other spheres of government. The vision and strategy of 2030 is sufficiently ambitious that we cannot intervene unilaterally to achieve the desired outcomes; we must ensure planned cooperation, especially with other spheres of Government.

Joburg 2030 ushers in a new era for the Johannesburg City Council.

I believe that this strategy is sufficiently focused and enables us to have a viable and realistic destination. It provides us with a detailed roadmap on how to build a better city for all.

Call Centre

On 1 December 2001, the City of Johannesburg launched its long awaited Call Centre, Joburg Connect.

The Call Centre project was initiated to provide citizens with a single point of contact for logging problems and complaints that could be referred and tracked.

It was also designed to provide a single number for all emergency calls. The Call Centre was initially scheduled to go live on 1 May 2001 and a second deadline identified was 1 July 2001. Both these were missed.

The magnitude of implementing such an organisation was seriously underestimated by the original project team and corrective measures had to be taken to ensure that all aspects of creating such a Call Centre were addressed.

Staff recruitment, initial training and setting up of the infrastructure were completed satisfactorily by mid November 2001 and the "go-live" status was eventually achieved on 1 December 2001.

During the first month a total of 176 000 calls were offered to Joburg Connect.

106 000 calls were made to the customer-care organisation and 70 000 were for emergency services.

By mid-January Joburg Connect had already received 49 269 calls on the customer care number.

These figures were the first indication that the City has had on the extent and nature of the problems facing our citizens. Approximately 76% of all calls made are for revenue related problems, while power, water, waste, roads and parks make up the bulk of the remaining logged calls.

Operational teething problems have been identified and are currently being rectified. The more serious issues around the capacity and responses of service delivery units to attend to the problems that have been logged by Joburg Connect on behalf of citizens are being addressed.

The powerful management information being provided by this state-of-the-art call centre is providing the city with a means of identifying and prioritising the actions required to address the non-delivery of services.

It is also being utilised on the basis of addressing competence and productivity issues at the Call Centre.

Furthermore, now that information is available, the call flows and routing will be modified to reduce bottlenecks in call queues and more sophisticated use of the existing technical infrastructure will soon be introduced to assist our citizens electronically.

It is recognised that Joburg Connect has some way to go but we look forward to continuously improving our response to service delivery for the citizens of Johannesburg.

We need patience and great understanding by all to allow the hard working staff, the Call Centre and this state-of-the-art technology to mature and benefit all of us.

We cannot expect an infant born yesterday to rise and run. This will be against all the laws of nature.

Emergency Management Services

During 2001, our emergency management services had completed its electronic risk mapping exercise and was able to place fire appliances and ambulances across the City, based on the particular risks that exist within the 11 regions.

The Public Information, Education and Relations Department was established in the quest to shift from a reactive to a proactive approach.

The Commander Cool character was launched during the South African Emergency Services Institute Conference in May 2001.

The department, through its educational interventions, reached some 32 000 children during 2001, teaching vital fire and life safety skills mainly to high-risk groups in disadvantaged areas of the City.

The EMS training academy graduated a total of 10 new recruits who were deployed to EMS base stations across the City, after a grueling six months training course, in addition, a further 292 students were trained in the various advanced professional training course offered by the Academy, five of whom graduated with the much sought after Advanced Life Support qualification.

Emergency Management Services was also the first EMS department on the continent to outsource its entire fire appliance fleet. The results of this groundbreaking decision are that the appliance fleet is currently operating at 99% availability.

EMS is involved in ensuring that adequate planning is conducted to ensure disaster preparedness and fire by-law compliance by all stakeholders as well as ensuring a specific focus on the hospitality industry regarding the World Summit on Sustainable Development. All major conference and accommodation venues have been inspected to ensure that venues have disaster plans in place, and compliance with fire safety legislation is achieved.

In addition, base station 15 (Sandown) will serve as the forward command post for response to any incidence that may occur during the Summit.

By-laws

This Council has expressed a wish to simplify by-laws. On 24 January 2002 the Mayoral Committee approved the appointment of a number of legal consultants to assist the Council in the editing and drafting of a number of new uniform by-laws.

It is known that when the current City of Johannesburg was proclaimed, the areas of the 14 local government bodies that were dissolved in 1994 and of the eight local government bodies that were dissolved in 2000 fell under the jurisdiction of this Council.

In this process of transition the by-laws that existed at the time of the dissolution of the said local government bodies, have to a large extent remained in place for the areas for which they were promulgated. The result is that on any particular subject matter, different by-laws apply to different areas. It is clear that this makes law enforcement in the City more complicated than it should be.

The main aims of the by-law drafting project are to make by-laws

  • Uniform on any subject matter for the whole City
  • Written in plain language so that everyone can understand them, and
  • Comply with the Constitution and national and provincial legislation.

The aim, with the appointment of consultants last week, was to expedite the process of making new by-laws, to benefit from legal expertise existing in Johannesburg and elsewhere in this regard, and empowerment.

It is expected that the first drafts of a number of by-laws will be coming before this Council by the end of May this year and that they will be promulgated in July and subsequent months. Although the making of laws is an ongoing process, the by-laws listed for the current project, should all be in operation by the end of this year.

The establishment of uniform by-laws is bound to make a major contribution towards by-laws enforcement in Johannesburg.

It is further envisaged that all the by-laws will become available in electronic format on the Internet and at terminals at the Council's service centre with a simple and accessible index system.

The purpose is to establish a basis for informing and educating the residents of Johannesburg on all the City's by-laws.

This is important, I believe, because residents of Johannesburg must have a working knowledge of the by-laws.

It is expected that the above initiatives will make a major contribution to the building and reinforcement of the respect for the law.

Inner City

Turning to the inner city and its regeneration.

There are currently seven CIDs operating in the City Centre. Newtown and Braamfontein covering approximately 40 city blocks.

Property owners initiated these CIDs in 1994. Since then they have been joined by other stakeholders and have had a significant impact on regeneration.

Crime has been reduced substantially. For example, independent surveys in 1994 establishment a mugging rate of 28 - 30 per month pre-establishment of the Central Improvement District. We have seen significant declines, reportedly a 50% reduction.

The economic impact is also significant. Vacancy rates are lower and rentals higher in improvement districts.

The business community is now in the process of formalising these voluntary improvement districts, so that, and subject to the voting and approval process which has commenced, the whole City Centre, Newtown, and parts of Braamfontein will be covered by CIDs.

In addition, CID Security has received special training in city ambassadorial skills and help on average 100,000 visitors, workers and residents with queries per year. Special training to enable these guards to enhance the CCTV or surveillance camera response time has also been provided. City contribution has been R10 million for the CCTV rollout.

Successful urban regeneration depends on strong and successful partnerships. The City has developed key partnership with a range of public and private sector stakeholders.

Through the Johannesburg Inner City Business Coalition and the Central Johannesburg Partnership the business community is actively involved in a number of initiatives, both at a policy and project level, that are promoting urban regeneration.

These range from support to the process of reviewing by-laws and the planning regime to investment in the upgrade of the public environment at, for example, the Anglo American Precinct, Gandhi Square and Fox Street.

A strong partnership has been developed with Provincial Government, especially through Blue IQ. Blue IQ has made a substantial investment in the key urban renewal projects at Constitution Hill and Newtown. This investment has enabled these projects to proceed rapidly and already the impact of these projects is being felt. Other Provincial Government Departments such as the Departments of Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture and the Department of Housing as well as the Department of Education, have contributed financially through their own programmes and through their support for City projects to urban renewal.

At a national level, support from the Department of Arts, Culture, Science and Technology, the Department of Transport and the Housing Department, is focused on making real contributions to urban renewal in the Inner City.

At a community level, partnerships have been forged with community organisations and NGOs, especially in the Joubert Park and Hillbrow/Berea areas. In particular, a key engagement with CBOs and NGOs in the environmental sector will see the establishment of the Greenhouse Environmental Resource Centre in Joubert Park.

Successful Capital Projects are the long-term lifeblood of our City. The City's commitment to urban renewal in the inner city takes many forms, from prioritisation of effort by City Departments and UACs on the inner city to capital expenditure on special projects.

During 2002, the City of Johannesburg, through the Johannesburg Development Agency, will expend some R63 million on key urban renewal projects, including Constitution Hill, Newtown, Greater Ellis Park, Faraday, and Jeppestown. In addition, close on R10 million has been allocated in this financial year to the Better Buildings Programme, and a further R10 million has been allocated for the upgrading of the environment in Hillbrow/Berea and the demolition of unsafe and unhealthy buildings.

The ALEX URBAN RENEWAL PROJECT is a critical part of the upliftment of our City and to ensure that the city gets it right the first seven months of the project have focused on formulating plans, strategies and policies and developing administrative systems.

An overall strategy for the project has been formulated including a vision and key outcomes.

The project is being implemented within geographic areas or precincts. A precinct manager will be responsible for coordinating development within a specific precinct. Ten precincts have been identified. I am informed the project is 80% on programme.

The total budget for this project in this financial year is R345 487 868.67. This represents an investment equivalent to approximately 700 rand for each household in our City.

Moroka Dam is situated immediately upstream of Vundla Drive where it first crosses the Moroka Stream upstream of Old Potch Road, the road in fact runs across the crest of the dam embankment. The stream is a tributary of Klipspruit and joins that river approximately 800 m downstream of Vundla Drive.

Over the past few years the dam basin has become silted up and overgrown with reeds, but it is clear from local knowledge and aerial photography that, until quite recently, there was a substantial open water body covering about 1.0 ha in extent. The main purpose of this project is to restore the open water body to its original extent and to rehabilitate the surrounding area to become an asset to the community of Soweto.

At the cost of 13 million rand the construction phase will commence with a call for tenders and will be managed by the JRA on behalf of the City.

We anticipate that the de-silting of the dam basin and rehabilitation of the embankment and outlet structures could commence towards the end of the wet season in about April 2002.

De-silting of the dam should take about three months with about thirty truck trips per day for this period. De-silting, therefore, should be substantially complete by about the end of July 2002; just in time for the World Summit on Sustainable Development. Of course we are mindful of the fact that as that will be in the middle of the winter season, the new dam may not fill up in time for the World Summit but the rehabilitation of an important environmental project will be complete for all to see.

I am happy to announce Madam Speaker, that this project has also brought on board the participation of the department of Water Affairs and Forestry which is the authority for water use licensing and dam construction.

The acquisition of 1 134 hectares of land in 1997 in the Cosmo City area positioned the council to embark on a process of meeting the diverse needs and aspiration of the affected communities.

The Cosmo project at a total cost of 20 million rand offers approximately 9 000 housing opportunities to a range of income groups. The balance of the project will make provision for some 6 000 market driven housing opportunities and a commercial development to build in sustainability.

The environmental impact assessment process is reaching finality and the second public meeting takes place on 28 February 2002 to complete the process before the final scoping report is submitted to the Department of Agriculture, Conservation, Environment and Land Affairs.

The township establishment application will be submitted soon thereafter and the successful completion of these legal processes will see the construction on site in September 2002.

A public meeting is being arranged for mid-February to ensure that all stakeholders are properly informed of the status of the project. A project implementation structure including representatives from the community is in full operation.

Finances have been secured from the Provincial Department of Housing and Consolidated Municipal Infrastructure program (CMIP) as well as from the City for the project. Other agencies including ESKOM and TELKOM have also financially committed themselves to the project. The Gauteng Transport Department has also committed itself to the funding of the road infrastructure.

Cosmo City is a truly integrated planning project and its successful implementation will serve as a best practice case for the type of development that is compliant with the Chapter One principle of the Development Facilitation Act. The total cost will be 20 million rands

My speech would be incomplete without reference to the very real REVENUE PROBLEMS our administration is presently facing. These problems are well known and have been extensively covered in the media, and I do not propose to detail them here. During the course of last year, Council initiated a re-examination of our strategy, management and structures in relation to revenue, and is putting in place a series of important steps to resolve these problems.

In the first place, A new Director: Revenue is revamping his management team, in particular by recruiting three new senior managers in the fields of billing, customer relations and revenue accounting. Recruitment of new expertise in middle management and supervisory levels will follow.

Secondly, we have put in place a substantial project management capacity, assisted by PriceWaterhouseCoopers, in order to ensure a thorough and rapid implementation of the existing projects to improve work processes, clean data, and standardise and document operating procedures.

We also have in place a series of initiatives in the field of human resources at Revenue. New management is now in place. Staff on inappropriate contracts are having their employment conditions regularised, parity problems are being addressed, training in work procedures and in customer relations are underway, and discipline is being restored.

In order to eliminate fraud, our new Internal Audit section has been conducting numerous investigations in Revenue. Assisted by this, management in Revenue has tightened the various controls in place. Five employees have recently been dismissed for fraud in cases arising from the ongoing investigations. We will not hesitate to take the sternest action against any staff member who commits fraud.

Our new credit control and debtor management policy is now in the process of being implemented. Tougher, more sophisticated and more flexible than previous policies, should permit better collection rates. We are currently developing more appropriate approaches to inner City credit control, as well as a special cases policy aimed at supporting cases of dire poverty, such as pensioners. These measures supported by the free basic services and rates rebates on lower value properties, will also assist in improving collection of rates.

More recently, data emerging from the call centre is also contributing to the resolution of these difficulties.

The agreement of Council with the National Treasury set the targets very high.

Although these targets should probably be revised downwards, I want to indicate to the National Treasury that we will solve this problem. This matter is being dealt with by the Mayoral Committee and we are confident that a solution will be found.

PLANNING AND ENVIRONMENT faces a number of Major Challenges:

  • The Development and ongoing improvements of administrative systems, business process and effective implementation to provide an efficient and effective service to the public;
  • Improved levels of capital expenditure;
  • The Alignment and active pursuance of the 2030 vision with respect to the roles played by the spatial development framework, integrated transport plan and environmental strategy for sustainable development.
It reports a number of Achievements:
  • The design of business unit structure, functional design, design and consolidation of business processes and systems, migration of staff and relocation into the centre.
  • Consolidation of fee structures and successful promulgation for all erstwhile administrative entities.
  • Establishment of a new tribunal system fully operational (including training of councillors, delegations, and setting-up of admin system and support) to cover the entire City of Johannesburg. Successful elimination of backlogs in the tribunal system.
  • The formulation and successful council approval of the Spatial Development Framework (previously City Development Framework) and 7 out of 11 Local Integrated Development Plans with the remaining 4 LIDPs scheduled for approval in February 2002.
  • Approval and promulgation of the Advertising Signs By-laws and initiation of a clean-up exercise over the festive season to note the new by-laws.
  • The conclusion of the land availability, services and funding agreements for COSMO city after approximately four years of negotiation and facilitation including public involvement. Cosmo city is the first fully integrated planning intervention comprising 15 000 housing units with low-cost housing as the prime focus of the project.
  • The signing of the host agreement with the international Council for Local Environmental Initiatives and the accommodation of the Africa Regional Office in the Metro Centre.
  • Ongoing involvement with WSSD activities with particular reference to local government positioning and substance development and facilitation of showcase projects.
  • Project management of the Spatial, Environmental and Transportation Framework for the Alex Renewal Project.

Making the City work means making our own systems work, including building applications. Council has received approximately 12000 plans and approved approximately 10 500 of these applications. The value of these approved projects is R 2,9 billion.

The performance of our wholly owned business units is critical to delivering the right services at the right price.

The City of Johannesburg as part of the transformation process established eleven (11) entities. These entities were established mainly to improve service delivery to the residents of Johannesburg.

Johannesburg Water, one of the Municipal Entities providing water and sanitation services, has within a year of operation implemented its policy of providing 6KL water with effect from 1 July 2001.

Johannesburg Water has proactively initiated a cholera public education campaign in high-risk areas. This campaign included the production and distribution of leaflets and stickers.

Johannesburg Water has also systematically increased its monthly testing of water. In the past about 100 water samples on piped water were taken and tested on a monthly basis. Currently tests are done on more than 400 samples a month. Johannesburg Water has also extended its sampling base to include water tanks located in informal settlement areas.

City Power delivers electricity to a relatively small part of Johannesburg. While Eskom services the historically disadvantaged areas of our City, we all understand and support the commitment to provide free lifeline electricity.

We also are acutely aware that City Power cannot reasonably provide free lifeline electricity to the areas it services without Eskom providing the same service to our poorest areas.

My Executive Mayoral Committee has had numerous interactions with the relevant Ministers in national government and Eskom and is confident that the commitment to provide lifeline electricity services to all our citizens will be realised by cooperation with all other stakeholders, including Eskom.

Other challenges that City Power successfully achieved were the electrification of three residential areas. These are Tshepisang, Alexandra Far East Bank and Matholesville. 4702 units will be completed by the end of March 2002.

The finalisation of the Kelvin Power Station PPA with AES Power (Pty) Limited, which generated R584 million to the City, was a major success for both City Power and the City of Johannesburg.

Pikitup, our waste management company is striving to improve the quality of life by providing a clean healthy environment through the provision of affordable quality services for and in partnership with the citizens of Johannesburg.

I know how frustrating it is to members of this council that some in our communities do not take responsibility for our own public space. Too often we see people dropping litter, or stealing out in the middle of the night to dump rubbish.

Let us take back our public spaces and create a pride in our City. Our company may be called Pikitup but our slogan should be "don't drop it".

Pikitup has successfully achieved the following:

  • An intensive brand building exercise resulted in Pikitup being associated with a quality waste management service. This is clearly reflected in the positive media responses as well as positive letters from ratepayers. Pikitup also established itself as a major stakeholder in the waste management industry within South Africa.
  • The company has almost completed the rollout of 240 litre wheeled bins throughout the Greater Soweto Area. The balance of the rollout programme to other areas will be achieved within the next three years. Although again some residents believe the bins are ideal for beer brewing and chickens. With the help of our communities it is hoped their original and appropriate use can be revived.
  • Several successful clean-ups, public awareness and recycling campaigns were launched in Alexandra, Inner City and Soweto and these initiatives are being sustained.
The Johannesburg Civic Theatre is a success story. It is our premier entertainment house and has achieved the following:
  • 262,154 patrons attended 743 performances held in the four theatres within the complex.
  • The 1,000-Seater Main Stage had a rental occupancy rate of over 85% throughout the year.
  • The theatre played host to major South African talents such as The SA Ballet Theatre, Pro Musica Orchestra and Opera, Hugh Masekela, Mirriam Makeba, Rebecca Malope, actors Michael Richard, Dorothy Ann Gould, Bill Flynn, Craig Urbani and Ian von Memerty - as well as international star attractions including The Bolshoi Ballet, the Zurich Ballet and violin virtuoso Joshua Bell.
  • The theatre enjoys the permanent tenancy of Peoples Theatre, South Africa's foremost production company of theatre for children. Twice daily, children are brought from schools in the townships and suburbs to receive their first experience of live theatre.
  • Within its resident staff complement of 85, fourteen members had been promoted and over twenty successfully re-deployed after identifying new areas of interest. The company developed a new, mid-level management team that is now truly representative of the country it services. Stage skills training is supervised by Gearhouse SA - the country's leading stage and concert technicians - and in financial year 2001 the company is investing over R150 000 in literacy, numeracy and career training for its staff.
  • The company closely associated itself with The Nelson Mandela Children's Fund and AIDS LINK South Africa for its charitable and fundraising activities and is an ongoing sponsor and supporter of the SAPS Hillbrow street children's home.
  • In August 2001, former President Nelson Mandela bestowed the honour on the Johannesburg Civic Theatre of giving his personal approval to the re-naming of the theatre's Main Stage. The complex now proudly boasts of housing the only Nelson Mandela Theatre worldwide.

We all look forward to the World Summit and the Civic Theatre hosting a major production to co-incide with this important event. I know we all will work to obtain the support of all interested parties to ensure its success.

The metropolitan bus service was corporatised in July 2000. Metrobus strategic role is to improve the commercial viability of the Municipal public transport service by providing a safe, reliable and affordable public transport service to its customers. In fulfilling its commitment to improve services, Metrobus has purchased 200 new buses, which were launched in December 2001. Metrobus also implemented a brand new fleet, fuel and revenue management system.

In ensuring affordable services, Metrobus has scholar term ticket, annual subsidised card for pensioners at a cost of R50 and "special attention'' programmes. There are not many Cities in the World that have had buses specially designed for our physically challenged community.

The Johannesburg Development Agency was established to drive developments that significantly contribute to achieving Johannesburg's potential as the African World Class City - a city of prosperity, excellent quality of life and a wealth of cultural and economic opportunity.

Johannesburg Development Agency's project portfolio currently focuses on one of the City's six key priorities, namely, the regeneration of the inner city. Among its many successes since it became operational in mid-2001, the JDA has:

  • Successfully completed the development of Mary Fitzgerald Square. This important place for gathering and celebration was launched by the President of South Africa on December 17th 2001 at a jazz concert attended by well over 15,000 residents of and visitors to Johannesburg.
  • Commenced construction of the new Constitutional Court, the anchor project in the re-development of Constitution Hill. The Hill, its Fort and its jail, tells the stories of our colonial and apartheid past, stories of the abuse of power of the state, stories of personal and political triumph.
When completed, the new Constitution Hill will be:
  • An internationally important symbol of the new South Africa; and
  • the home of the Constitutional Court.
  • It will also be an extraordinary place to visit, to experience and reflect on our history and future.

The Johannesburg Roads Agency is in the process of developing and upgrading road infrastructure. The capital programme for the financial year ending June 2001 was successfully concluded at the budgeted allocation of R145 million. The programmes included the strengthening of existing infrastructure such as storm water systems, resurfacing of roads and increased maintenance of high traffic volume assets.

JRA has constructed new roads at Kaalfontein (Midrand) at a value of R16 million and continue to extend the network for other areas in Ivory Park and surrounding areas.

Anderson Street: A major taxi route out of the city in the westerly direction. This project will enhance the accessibility of the inner city especially Westgate station from the Fordsburg and Mayfair areas.

The Comaro Mooi Road: A major road linking the bustling traffic flow for Southern suburbs of the City. If our CBD has to be a hive of activity through all the other initiatives this corridor will enhance the road accessibility.

Soweto Highway: A project that has taken too long to complete and JRA has resolved to get it completed to link Orlando Meadowlands and Dobsonville at the Roodepoort Roads intersection.

Kliptown K43 Arterial road: The link for Old Potchefstroom road in Soweto through Kliptown to the Moroka bypass highway will alleviate the access condition for the people living and running businesses in Soweto, Kliptown and Lenasia.

Orange Farm and Soweto: Some 55km surfacing Ext. 1 and Orange Farm proper and Stretford and Soweto townships of Orlando West, Mofolo and Dube. This programme continues to be a focus of improving the service levels in township environment.

JRA has extended their services to these areas:

  • Mulbarton Road in Fourways.
  • Peirre Road Honeydew small farm Holdings.
  • Erasmus road Radiokop small Holding Roodepoort.
  • Cornelius road Randburg.
  • Rocky Street reinstatement Fairlands.
  • Premier Road Roodepoort.
JRA similarly procured some 80 new traffic signal controllers, most of which are being installed with the view of improving traffic flow before the World Summit later in this calendar year.

In late August and at the beginning of September this year the eyes of the world will be focused on Johannesburg. I am informed more than 50 000 representatives around the world, including over 100 heads of state will descend on the City of Johannesburg to attend the World Summit on Sustainable Development - a forum which will address the environmental concerns and the development challenges confronting the world today.

This Summit is important because it holds a promise of a better future for the world.

The Summit is expected to create more than 14 000 jobs and contribute an estimated R1, 5 billion to the national economy. There are other positive financial spin-offs, especially in the area of tourism, which is expected to generate an estimated R69 million.

The summit is clearly very important to the City.

The city has a well-structured means of ensuring that the City gains full benefit from the summit. The Johannesburg World Summit Company (JOWSCO) is a section 21 company that has been established to coordinate all the relevant logistical arrangements. In addition, a political committee led by Minister of the Environment, Mr. Valli Moosa, and constituted of the MECs of the Department of Agriculture and Environment and that of Finance as well as the Mayor of Johannesburg and a number of senior officials from all spheres of government has been formed and meet on a regular basis. We have also set up a Mayoral subcommittee that is constituted of the Mayor, Members of the Mayoral Committee, Kenny Fihla and Parks Tau as well as senior officials, City Manager: Pascal Moloi, Executive Director for Finance: Roland Hunter and Executive Director for Planning and Environment: Amanda Nair.

The City is looking forward to hosting this event. Despite the mind boggling logistical issues involved, The Partnership cannot afford to fail. Every employee, every Council-owned company, every resident of Johannesburg must contribute in making this event a success.

Ten years ago it was Rio. In 2002 Johannesburg is beckoning. I know the partnership will be ready.

Madam speaker, allow me to conclude by stating that all 217 Councilors in this City should act together to address the bread-and-butter issues that are affecting all the residents of Johannesburg irrespective of their political affiliation. This does not mean that there is no acknowledgement that each political party is free to express its views and voice its criticism. Perhaps madam Speaker, I should say that we can and should act in unity and yet stand opposed to one another as long as we remain vigilant about the principle of serving above self.

We owe the people who have elected us. We dare not abuse their trust. We will continue to build a better life for all.

I thank you.

 


 

Bookmark and Share
Last Updated on 15 May 2007