Executive Mayor`s statement - 17 September 2015

Speaker of Council,
Deputy Executive Mayor,
Mayoral Committee members,
Representatives from the media,
Ladies and gentlemen in the public gallery,
Good morning. Goeiemôre. Ons is bly dat julle tyd gemaak het om ons verrigtinge by te
Firstly let me warmly welcome the Speaker of the EC Legislature, Honourable Ms Noxolo
Kievit and her team to this Council meeting. We look forward to the Speaker’s
presentation on the program of taking the Legislature to the People. I also invite
members of the public to attend the Legislature sittings that will take place at NMMU
Missionvale campus on 21-24 October 2015.
I also want to welcome the Acting DG of Human Settlements, Mr Mbulelo Tshangana
and his team from the Department of Human Settlements. When we talk to the people
of our city, the one issue that they raise without fail is the delivery of houses. We have
discussed this matter in this Council on many occasions, and we as the leadership are
committed to sorting out the problems with delivering decent houses on a high priority
The presence of the delegation from Human Settlements here today is a clear signal that
we are not alone in tackling this challenge. You and your team have already done
considerable work behind the scenes to get us to this point, and we look forward to
your address on matters relating to adequate capacity to deliver the houses, funding,
management, rectification, SMME development, the Rooster system, ongoing forensic
investigations to root out corruption, job creation, timeous payment, and matters
relating to the revolving fund. We thank Minister Sisulu for sending you here and for the
support to accelerate the professionalization and modernization of our administration.
We are pleased that following the signing of the MOU with Minister and MEC in June
2015, R4.5bn has been set aside for the human settlements projects in the Metro.
We must however ensure that these funds are protected through regular audits and
forensic investigations.
We are also very pleased with the commitment to guarantee 100% procurement
through local SMMEs. This is in line with the pledge we made recently that we are going
to improve unemployment and the status of SMMEs drastically. We do not want anyone
to remain an SMME perpetually.
Today’s Council meeting in Helenvale, is our way of acknowledging all of you and reconnecting with our community who have supported us. It is from residents like L Berry,
a resident from this area that I draw great inspiration from. Berry wrote in a letter to
The Herald, published on 15 September 2015, about the prevailing awful conditions in
the area, and pertinently called for us to save the community from gangsterism,
corruption, poverty, drugs, unemployment and crime in general. We are committed to
address these challenges here in Helenvale, Motherwell, Uitenhage, Central and
throughout the Metro.
Needless to say, the letter fills me with optimism about the future of our magnificent
city. It spelt out our programme of action to make Nelson Mandela Bay a better place.
Sedert ons van die eerste dag hier aangekom het, is dit ons doel om ‘n stad te bou
waarop Nelson Mandela trots sou wees en waarin die mense hul menswaardigheid
herwin het.
We are building a city that is transparent and responsive to the needs of our
communities. To this end, we started with Council meetings in New Brighton, Uitenhage
and now we are here at your doorstep, a historic first for the Northern Areas. Ons is
hier sodat julle kan hoor wat ons bespreek, wat ons planne is en dat hierdie Metro
toenganklik is vir al die mense. The days of taking decisions behind closed doors are long
On my way to this state of the art facility, built by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality
through its agency the MBDA. We have surely come a long way since former President
Thabo Mbeki visited Helenvale and declared it a Presidential project, following which
the Mandela Bay Development Agency was tasked to implement on our behalf. Today,
Helenvale looks much better - but we still have a long way to go. Harde werk lê nog vir
ons voor om ‘n Helenvale te bou waarop ons almal trots kan wees, mar die goeie muus
is dat ons die nodige fondse het. . Die werk het alreeds begin en die Metro sal sy bydrae
maak om vernuwing en herlewing n werklikheid te mask.
It has been our communities, which lifted our spirits and provided us with the gusto to
undertake our responsibilities and work each and every day, with a deep sense of pride
and relentless purpose. I therefore urge and encourage you to continue to do so as we
embark on a brighter future together, as we create a livable and conducive
environment, which future generations can be proud of. This requires a collective effort
and a strong spirit of unity. We have suffered enough, we have been divided long
enough , let us build our common future . On behalf of municipality, its leadership and
all its staff we thank the Helenvale residents for your perseverance and firm belief that
the winds of change are real now!
We are commemorating the 38th anniversary of the passing of the icon, Steve Biko, the
founder of our student organization during the 1970s SASO and the BPC. On Saturday,
September 12, together with Mr Moki Cekisani and the leadership of the ANC, I visited
the Sanlam Building in Strand Street where Steve Biko, student activist Lungile Tabalaza
and George Botha, a teacher at Paterson high School, and many others were tortured
and subsequently brutally murdered. It was indeed a moving experience. We have now
taken the initiative to upgrade this building as part of our pledge to take care of our
history and historical sites of struggle. We have already engaged with the owners and
the SA Heritage resource Council about this matter.
Stag Mitchel, one of the activists from the generation of George Botha, is among us here
In the same vein, the history of Nelson Mandela Bay must be properly documented.
Daar is baie stories van mense van die Noordelike Gebiede wat ‘n belangrike rol gespeel
het om hierdie land vry te maak. Julle stories moet behoue bly vir die nageslag. Mnr
Abrahams is hier vandag en man praat van n ouer se pyn wat n seun verloor het in die
From next month we invite the community to bring picnic baskets and come to the
square on days that will be announced to interact on a personal level. Niemand word
meer toegelaat om die plein as parkeerplek te gebruik nie. Dit is daar vir die
gemeenskap bymekaar te kom om problems te bespreek en oplossings te vind.
Over this short period of 100 days, we conducted a very important exercise of intensive
public engagement that gave us enormous insight into how we could improve our
performance and outcomes and remain focused on the core issues, meaning and
purpose - of what it means to be a developmental local government.
We have sought to ensure that financially the NMBM is managed prudently, given the
social imperatives and competing priorities and needs. We have increased our financial
viability and also generated a lot of investor support. We are in the process of
addressing key infrastructural backlogs. So with sober deliberation and much goodwill
among constituencies, the NMBM will continue to be a sustainable municipality. This is
further evidenced by the long-term confidence shown by the latest credit rating by
Moody’s of our city based on the liquidity profile and the debt to revenue ratio of the
We are the only city that has not been down-graded, which means that we now have
the same credit rating as Ekurhuleni and the City of Cape Town! Two metropolitan
municipalities that are much bigger than us.
There is no doubt in my mind that under our leadership, the Nelson Mandela Bay
Municipality is poised for bigger and better things to come. I am convinced that the 100
plus days that have passed have indeed shaped our vision of once again becoming the
best run city, comprising a competent, caring and socially responsible public service and
citizenry. It gives us a good idea of the commitment and hard work that would be
required to succeed. The only way we can succeed in our institutional mission is through
the continued hard work and diligence of both the politicians and the municipal officials
of this municipality.
The report of our first 100 days in office on 09 September 2015 serves as a broad canvas
of this municipality’s performance, with the objective to highlight the plans, proactive
responses and intended outcomes of our first ’s first 100 days in office.
Madame Speaker, we are well aware that it requires a radical shift and programmatic
interventions to deal decisively with unemployment, poverty and inequality, as we
advance towards an equitable and just society in the Bay. This is why we are now
embarking on the IDP and budget process for our next planning cycle. This IDP and
budget process will be tabled to and adopted by Council prior to the 2015/16 financial
year. With the continuing support of our community, and the dedication and support of
all directorates and employees of the NMBM, we can realize our short, medium, and
long-term service delivery goals, and once again deliver the services our people deserve
underlined by credible and clean government that delivers effectively and efficiently.
The medium and long term economic and investment strategy that will be finalised will
change the face of the municipality and the Nelson Mandela Bay as a whole. This is
premised on our assessments of institutional performance and interventions to ensure a
continuous improvement in governance, service delivery and accountability, while
promoting a more efficient and motivated workforce, and socio-economic
transformation in all our communities. We will be gathering at Summerstrand Inn on
Friday, 18 September 2015 to receive inputs from various role players.
The development of a smart city and a township economy will receive special attention.
We have already put in place fibre optic infrastructure to roll out wi-fi across the Metro.
The wi-fi will be linked to integrated hi mast light which will also have CCTV cameras.
The Development Bank is assisting us with this program. They will also assist us in
developing a commercial model on how we can sell data at discounted rates. Schools
and libraries will be guaranteed free wi-fi. Walmer High is already benefitting from the
free wi-fi program.
Therefore along the commitment to develop a township economy, one of our key tasks
must be the achievement of economic growth and development to create the
prosperity we need and to provide the resources that will enable us to address the
priorities as outlined in 100 days report.
We will continue to listen to our communities, expressing their dissatisfaction and
discontent and respond promptly. All of this of course involves a significant change in
work ethic, dedication and consistency in doing our work.
I would like to appreciate the efforts of the specialist PE gang task team of the South
African Police Services that reported several successes in the fight against gang violence
in our Northern Areas. In the same breath we would like to encourage you to do more,
because families are still living in fear, the deaths of our youth too many and too painful.
Pooling resources as well as additional resources must be earmarked to assist with
clamping down on gangs, especially in light of the recent spate of gang activities. In
August the South African Police Services, Community Policing Forums and the
municipality joined hands with a Take Back Nelson Mandela Bay campaign that will go a
long way towards fighting crime and tackling social issues. The matter of the Metro
police and Traffic Officers are also receiving attention. We have asked the ED of Safety
and Security to give me timelines for the establishment of the Metro Police.
We have announced several major investments in Nelson Mandela Bay over the last
couple of weeks. It emerged that Goodyear South Africa is pumpimg R 670 million rands
into their Uitenhage plant that will see it produce more high-performance tyres to meet
demand. The investment comes on the back of VWSA announcement of a R 4.5 billion
investment into its Uitenhage plant and that of Ford Motor Company’s Struandale Plant
launch of two new diesel engines. Soon we will be meeting the management of these
companies to express our gratitude and discuss matters of mutual concern.
Congratulations to Loyiso Gijana, a grade 10 pupil at Muir College in Uitenhage and
Amanda Antony of Port Elizabeth who studied music at NMMU has made it to the Idols
Top ten. Keep on voting for these amazing two pop idols! We hold thumbs that they
stay in the competition until the end.
Seven Walmer Township Karate Club children emerged with gold medals and trophies
from the National Knockdown Junior Karate Championships at the NMMU campus. This
is a huge achievement for both the manager, Mr Joshua Mzingelwa, and the club. We
wish you great success during the next stage of the competition in East London. Well
done and good luck.
We also wish the six EP athletes well who will represent SA at the Biathle World
Championships in Batumi, Georgia.
Congratulations also go to the 2 pupils from Pearson High and Daniel Pienaar for their
medals haul, making us proud at the Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa.
Last but not least the Springboks, will be competing in the Rugby World Cup. Let’s all get
behind the Springboks, Coach Heyneke Meyer, Captain Jean de Villiers and the team as
they start their RWC 2015 campaign in London on Saturday against Japan.
As you all know, we have already suspended 17 officials and very soon we will be
announcing more suspensions. The Hawks are also conducting investigations. Our fight
against corruption is already yielding results.
Madame Speaker, the MTN 8 finals will take place on Saturday at our iconic stadium. I
am confident that we will once host an excellent event. I would like to encourage
football enthusiasts to get a ticket and support first class football at our stadium.
We also need to continue to support Chippa United and the EP Kings to ensure that they
participate competitively and win trophies.
I urge you to support the start of the Take Back the City motorcade at City Hall at 08h00
on Saturday
I thank you.
D.A. Jordaan
Executive Mayor