How is our municipality doing in its 2017-2022 planning?

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At the end of this introduction, you will find a link to a report evaluating Makana Municipality’s Service Delivery and Budget Implementation Plan (SDBIP) for 2017/18 against the Integrated Development Plan (IDP) for 2017- 2022. The report attempts to ascertain whether these documents meet the requirements for effective and accountable strategic planning that realistically gives priority to the needs of Makana residents. Arguably, the SDBIP for 2017/18 aligns to the IDP for 2017-2022 through responding to the needs of the Makana community identified in the IDP.

It is difficult to assess the SMART-ness of the set targets, because they are not time-bound and puts their achievability in doubt. The targets set in the operational plan are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and not time-bound. The period given to all these targets is the entire 2017/18. It is not clear when will these targets be achieved within 2017/18.

The non-financial targets could have been achieved in months if they were implemented at the beginning of the new financial year. Some deliverables in the operational plan have functional areas for accountability purposes and others do not have them. There are budget allocations for each target; but there is no motivation for that particular allocation, making it difficult to prove why a particular target is worth its budget.

The SDBIP furthers aims to address the municipality’s challenges identified in the IDP. Even though the municipality restructured its development priorities, they need to highly prioritise good governance, institutional development and public participation over all basic service delivery related developments, because a well-developed institution with improved governance results effective and efficient services.

The municipality’s commitment to waste management within its boundaries is necessary, because
pollution negatively affects human health, animals, vegetation, as well as soil, air, and water
quality. The municipality needs to have updated and enforceable bylaws to ensure adherence to this commitment.

The municipality aims to have signed performance agreements by senior and middle managers, and to develop individual Performance Management System (PMS) policy. It should prioritise the development of the PMS policy, so that individual employees can understand their annual performance evaluation process. The individual PMS
policy must clearly state measures for applying corrective action on staff who require expert support to improve and those who require professional disciplinary action for negligence or wilful underperformance and supressing the efforts of improving municipal governance.

The municipality commits to revise its organogram by 30 June 2018. This is necessary, because it will affect annual staff performance and most important delay the provision of urgent municipal services to its clients. Moreover, in the interests of improving service delivery, governance and accountability to its residents, the
municipality must adhere to its commitment to update the indigence register monthly. This will help to trace inconsistencies on a monthly basis, verify and rectify the errors, so that they do not affect the quarterly registers submitted to Treasury for the Equitable Share transfers.

The municipality planned to collect 100 percent revenue on a quarterly basis in this financial year. To ensure accurate billing and improved supervision of meter readers, the revenue manager must continue take corrective action for inadequate reading of meters for no valid reason to enhance the 100 percent collection revenue rate.

The municipality’s commitment to comply with section 102 of the MFMA in this financial year is a necessary step towards improving its governance. As a recommendation, Makana Municipality must develop and implement consequence management processes to officials who fail to comply with section 102 of the MFMA.

Since the municipality admits that its governance needs to be enhanced, it must be in the interest of their clients. They must further follow relevant legislation, be effective, efficient, transparent and accountable for the betterment of the people.

It is recommended that the land audit process to be done this year must not take the entire 2017/18 financial year, so that land for human settlements can be secured sooner and land can also be sold to interested parties for municipal revenue generation purposes. The land audit needs to be conducted by an individual with advanced skills in Geographic Information System (GIS). A fast-tracked land audit will also benefit the municipality in effectively utilising the land for housing development, business development, to addressing commonage
demarcation, grazing land, town planning and agricultural purposes.

The municipality plans to report quarterly on RDP housing development projects. These reports must be easily accessible to the public through existing forms of communication to the public. The revived Masiphathisane platform must also be used to improve public access to municipal information, in the interests of cooperation between the municipality and its residents for the benefit of improved governance and municipal service provision.

Read more: Local Government SPE 2017 December.

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Azlan Makalima, a Grocotts Mail Online Producer and a Head-Director at Multimedia Makenik, a Small Medium Micro Enterprise on Event Management, Graphic, Audio and Visual Design.

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