Maimane accuses national govt of neglecting Limpopo

DA leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: SAPA

DA leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: SAPA

Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane on Saturday accused national government of looking away as the Limpopo provincial and local governments tear the province apart.

While Limpopo was blessed with some of South Africa’s oldest recorded history and spectacular scenery – the gateway to the north bursting with tourism potential – the province had been forgotten by its government, he told a gathering in Olifantshoek as part of the Limpopo leg of his DA Vision 2029 tour.

“And while the national government looks the other way, the provincial government here, along with various inept and corrupt municipalities, has been allowed to tear this province apart,” Maimane said.

“In-fighting between ANC factions in several municipalities has had a disastrous effect on service delivery in the province and has, at times, left parts of Limpopo resembling a war zone.”

But the real frustration in Limpopo was the government’s inability to spend public money.

Massive amounts of money had remained unspent by the provincial education department as well as the human settlements department.

“This is public money and was meant to be spent on you. It was meant to build houses and educate your children, and when it wasn’t spent, it got returned to national government,” he said.

“Of the 12,500 houses the government promised to build here in Limpopo by the end of the 2013/2014 financial year, only 1500 were completed. At the same time it sent a billion rand back because it wasn’t spent.”

The province was home to more than 400,000 “discouraged jobseekers” – people who had lost all hope of ever finding a job and had simply given up looking.

“This is a province where the education department is better known for its inability to deliver text books and its mass poisoning of children in its school feeding programme than for the education it provides for your children.

“It is a province where water delivery is almost non-existent in many municipalities, including right here in your own village of Olifantshoek.

“In 2015 in South Africa, no one should have to buy water from a neighbour with a borehole to survive,” Maimane said.

The DA had been working tirelessly for the people of Limpopo and, as a result, its support had been growing in the province.

Vision 2029 described what South Africa would look like after 10 years of a DA-led government, in 2029.

A South Africa where a child born in Olifantshoek had the same opportunities to live a life he or she valued as a child born in Sandton.

A non-racial society built on freedom, fairness, and opportunities for all its people, where the hurtful legacy of apartheid was addressed and reversed through targeted, impactful policies.

A South Africa with a world class education system, quality healthcare across all nine provinces, basic services delivered to all its people, and a well-trained, well-equipped police force that served communities and ensured their safety.

The South Africa in Vision 2029 was a place where new small businesses could thrive, creating millions of new jobs; a South Africa with a fast-growing economy and opportunities for everyone to become part of that economy.

“The DA’s Vision 2029 is governed by a caring, competent and clean DA government that doesn’t tolerate any form of corruption or any form of wasteful spending of public money,” Maimane said.

today in print