The people of the Northern Areas of Nelson Mandela Bay can no longer be treated like second-class citizens and the proposed discriminatory ward-based budget for this part of the metro, yet again highlights that the government of the day feels nothing for our people.
Today, 13 September 2022, I was joined by DA EC Provincial Leader, Nqaba Bhanga, MPL, PE Northern Areas Constituency Leader, Yusuf Cassim, MPL, and DA NMB Caucus Leader, Cllr Rano Kayser, in marching against this unfair treatment. (pictures here, here, here and here)
The DA recently rejected a ward-based budget which allocated only 5% of the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality’s Capital Budget to 10 DA wards in the Northern Areas. This means that only 5 cents of every rand will be spent on these wards.
In an area where thousands of people are dependent on free basic services and where thousands of people live in backyard shacks, no big developmental projects have been earmarked for implementation.
Approximately 200 000 people live in these 10 wards and given the socio-economic needs of the Northern Areas, the DA has taken a strong stance against this discriminatory ward-based budget. In spite of key developmental needs in wards in the Northern Areas, infrastructure allocations in some wards were woefully inadequate. These include ward 13 (R2,7 million), ward 34 (R1 million) and ward 35 (R2 million).
We will now rework the ward-based budget and submit recommendations to council to ensure a fair allocation of funds to the people of the Northern Areas. We will also table a motion at the next sitting of council to request that the ward-based budget be amended.
When the DA and its coalition partners take over government in Nelson Mandela Bay we will redraft ward-based budgets to ensure that every ward in the metro receives a fair allocation.
Now is the time to put a new government in place that will get the Northern Areas and Nelson Mandela Bay working again.