The City of Johannesburg’s Executive Mayor, Cllr Herman Mashaba, reassured Region F residents and businesses during an Integrated Development Plan (IDP) presentation at the City Hall that the City was addressing lawlessness.
The IDP process is one of the most powerful tools which residents could use to influence the direction they want their municipality to take, an approach to planning that involves the entire municipality and its citizens in finding the best solutions to achieve good long-term development. Residents also have an input in the determination and prioritisation of the budget and services rendered by the City.
Addressing scores of residents who complained about undocumented foreigners in the City, Mayor Mashaba said that, the newly adopted law enforcement strategy of Buya Mthetho was being deployed throughout all the seven regions to restore law and order.
The City was also working closely with the South African Police Service and Home Affairs to deal with lawbreakers and undocumented foreigners, the mayor said during the IDP presentation.
He said the City was facing many challenges, which include high rates of poverty, slow economic growth and high unemployment and corruption.
Some of the projects being undertaken in Region F included the R111 million Kazerne Parkade, which is expected to be completed in August 2018, the R30 million Hillbrow Tower Precinct, the R1.5 million Ghandi Square BRT implementation, which is expected to be completed in June 2018 and South Hills Mixed Housing Development R106 million, which is spread across multiple financial years.
Mayor Mashaba told all those present that, “we need to bring back that spirit of entrepreneurship where our communities are not relaying on government tenders and corruption” to succeed.
He encouraged communities to create unique business opportunities that would build and sustain the community and elaborated about the importance of educating the community about the basic principles of running a business.
The mayor added that Opportunity Centres will be created to empower and educate the community of business skills and by 2021 there will be two centres in each region.
The community was also encouraged to take part in citizen engagement activities such as A Re Sebetseng, the monthly clean-up campaign to make Johannesburg an attractive city for business development.
Council Speaker, Da Gama has repeatedly advised residents to attend these IDP meetings and make inputs on the draft tariffs which would affect the rates for services such as electricity, water and property.
Johannesburg has a poverty rate of 37%, unemployment stood at 32.3% and youth unemployment was at 40%. The City’s population had grown to 5.05 million from 4.9 million last year and there were about 180 informal settlements spread across all regions.