1. Transportation plays a very critical role in the economy and livelihoods in our province. It’s all about moving goods and passengers.
2. The hot and cold relationship that this department has with the taxi industry remains, not just a matter of ongoing concern, but a risk to the above-mentioned scenario. Finally, a lasting solution needs to be found.
3. The atrocious conditions of the majority of road networks, mainly in the rural areas, makes it least interesting and attractive to venture out there for any purpose at all. Yet we are in a predominately rural province. This inhibits the development and growth of the rural economies. These conditions have a direct and significant impact on the drive towards urbanisation. The consequence of which is the burdening of local government with early arrivals of urban dwellers.
4. As a member of the economic cluster, the department is expected to play a significant role in the creation of both work and business opportunities. However, the MEC sends contradicting messages in her policy speech.
On page 4, she starts off by pencilling: “We will implement a procurement strategy that seeks to contribute to SMME and Local Economic Development”. Then four paragraphs further down, she laments the fact that road infrastructure is driven, in the main, by external service providers instead of the department’s internal teams.
“We want to ensure that external service providers complement our internal teams instead of the current scenario where they do the bulk of our work”. Asazi ke ukuba masise eyiphi Komkhulu.
Then she goes on to pain the Eastern Cape economy by telling us that she has splurged R252 million on one or a same suppliers of plant items. Had that budget been spent on actual operations, so many of local entrepreneurs would have benefited. As a result, so much of our taxes are going to be tied up in depreciating machinery which must be maintained. whereas this would have been the responsibility of the private sector.
5. The much-anticipated roads masterplan has yet to be presented to the committee. Consequently, there is just no indication of the direction which this department is going. No details are being availed at all about the roads which are going to be improved. This feud situation lends itself very much vulnerable for the mishandling of funds.
6. There are no new road-making methodologies being explored yet some have been available from as far back as 2006.
7. Further signs of a confused department are in programme for transport regulation. A whopping R2,5 million has been set aside for road safety prayers, but the budget for the Law Enforcement function has been reduced by 9.2%. It looks like this department is more ready for prayers, which lend no technical expertise on traffic management. To put an icing on the ongoing confusion there is a budget of R50 m for no specific activity. Cash is just being splashed about. Hayi kumnandi Kwa Transport VHAA!!!