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Joburg ward committee members receive induction Print E-mail
24 July 2017
CoJ 

The City of Johannesburg kicked off a ward committee induction process on Saturday July 22 to empower the recently elected ward committee members with information to support the metro in delivering services.

The ward committee members were elected during citywide polls at the beginning of 2017 – about six months after the 2016 local government vote.

The first round of the induction, aimed at giving ward committee members a clear understanding of their roles in the 10 portfolios they will be serving in, was held at four venues in three regions: Jabulani Civic Centre (Region D), Phefeni Recreation Centre (Region D), Lenasia Civic Centre (Region G) and Southern Suburbs Recreation Centre (Region F).

The second and last round will be held on Saturday July 29 at Rabie Ridge Hall (Region A), Berario Recreation Centre (Region B), Roodepoort Civic Centre (Region C) and Jabula Recreation Centre (Region E).

Ward committee members are paid a R1 000 monthly stipend.

Speaking during the first round, Speaker of Council Cllr Vasco da Gama said the induction sought to clarify the roles of ward committee members in the various portfolios. He said the induction would be followed by a series of workshops, which would deal with the 10 portfolios at length and in great detail.

“This will be so each member understands what is going on in their portfolios,” Cllr Da Gama said. He added that the ward committee members would also learn how to escalate matters, deal with service delivery issues and work with urban inspectors. He said they would also learn about ward governance to assist in the effective delivery of services.

Cllr Da Gama said ward committee members played roles such as monitoring ward-based implementation of City projects and ensuring effective and continuous service delivery. “As the new administration we want ward committees to work as a support structure for the council.

“Each ward committee member will serve on different portfolio for every ward in the City and those portfolios mirror what the Executive Mayor, Herman Mashaba, has as a plan. Ward committee members are supposed to identify problems within their particular wards for their respective portfolios.

“This is to ensure they are able to give their councillors the necessary information and submit reports to the Speaker’s Office so we can highlight the issues with the Members of Mayoral Committee’s departments,” Cllr Da Gama said. He added that ward committees were not a tool to hammer the council.

“Ward committees must work with the council so the City can achieve its service delivery goals,” he said.

Region F ward committee member Sello Mabiletsa told the Speaker the stipend was not sufficient to sustain ward committee members. “Many of us here are unemployed. So, how are we going to rid ourselves of poverty with this stipend?” Mabiletsa asked.

In response, Cllr Da Gama said: “This is not a salary but only a stipend. If people thought they were going into jobs by becoming ward committee members, they were wrong because this is not a job. This is a voluntary service that you get a stipend for.”

The 10 portfolios ward committee members will play a role in are Housing, Transport, Public Safety, Finance and Economic Development, Infrastructure and Services (City Power, Johannesburg Water, and Pikitup), Community Development 1 (Sports, Culture and Youth), Community Development 2 (Women, Faith Based Groups, CBOs and NGOs), Health, Development Planning and Urban Management.

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Last Updated on 24 July 2017