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IDP Summit unlocks billions in investment

 

The City of Johannesburg is to spend almost R10 billion in the next financial year to fund capital projects identified by residents during the 2015-2016 draft Budget Review and Integrated Development Plan (IDP) public participation process.

This was revealed in a presentation by Executive Mayor Councillor Parks Tau at an IDP Stakeholder Summit at Wembley Stadium in Turffontein at the weekend.

The City has hosted more than 20 meetings across its seven regions during which members of the public were given the opportunity to make inputs and comments on the 2015-2016 draft Budget and IDP Review.

Saturday’s meeting was a culmination of the month-long public participation process, during which submissions and proposals from various cluster meetings were discussed and, where applicable, incorporated into the final IDP document. This was the fifth and final review of the City’s IDP under the current mayoral term, hence its theme: “The Final Push”.

Briefing more than 1 000 residents from all the City’s regions about the outcomes of the imbizos, Mayor Tau said the “final push” was aimed at:

Strengthening the foundation of basic service provision;
Elevating and refocusing strategic flagship programmes such as the Corridors of Freedom, Jozi@Work, the Blue Economy, Green Economy and Smart City initiatives;
Improving communication methods linked to development; and
Reconnecting with residents.
“The City has consistently focused on identifying and refining priority areas for delivery in support of its desired outcome of a liveable, sustainable and resilient City. Over the term, City priorities have been reflected in the direction provided in the Joburg Growth and Development Strategy 2040 (GDS 2040); the City’s 10 priorities; commitments detailed in each State of the City Address, public engagements, and planning documents such as the City’s IDP and SDBIP.

“In addition to delivery areas that have been prioritised over time, the City faces additional challenges that necessitate the addition of different priorities – for example load-shedding, the need for dedicated focus on Kliptown, and informal settlement support. By elevating these programmes, the City aims to fast‐track delivery and implementation, with the support of regular reporting and the removal of bottlenecks/challenges,” the Mayor said.

Members of the public welcomed the feedback. They, however, appealed to the City to fund youth skills development, build sports fields, upgrade roads, provide water and speed up housing delivery, especially in informal settlements. A woman from Snake Park complained about the lack of basic services and the high levels of crime in the area. Another resident complained of having not benefited from the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).

Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) for Finance Geoffrey Makhubo assured residents that their issues would be addressed.

“We have heard your cries. Working together we can make Johannesburg great, but the city will not be developed in a day,” he said.

He said challenges around Jozi@Work, the City’s ambitious empowerment and job-creation initiative, were “teething problems that can be addressed”.

MMC Makhubo said the City had committed over R3 billion to the Jozi@Work in the 2015-2016 financial year. Residents were also encouraged to lodge complaints through the city’s call centre. He noted that the backlog of queries had dropped from almost 70 000 to 30 000. The South African Youth Council appealed for more resources to train young people.

MMC Makhubo urged the youth to get involved in information technology and communication programmes being rolled out by the City.