ETHEKWINI NEWS FLASH
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
22 February 2018
 
Full Council Decisions
 
CITY TO SET-UP CATALYTIC PROJECTS OFFICE TO FAST-TRACK CATALYTIC PROJECTS
 
The creation of a Catalytic Projects Office, within the Economic Development and Planning Cluster, was welcomed at a Full Council meeting held today, 22 February.
 
A report of the organogram of the Office was tabled at the meeting. This includes the funded post of Head: Strategic Projects and Programme Manager be transferred to the newly created Office.
 
The report also stated that the newly created and changed posts be subjected to the grading process by the Compensation Management Branch to confirm the envisaged grades in the financial implications table.
 
EThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede welcomed the establishment of the Office saying it would help the City, through the fast-tracking of catalytic projects, to create jobs.
 
She applauded the efforts of the Economic Development and Planning Cluster for this initiative.
 
Chairperson of the Governance and Human Resources Committee Councillor Barbara Fortein said the organogram was discussed in her cluster to ensure that measures taken would make the Office more effective.
 
Chairperson of the Economic Development and Planning Committee Councillor Sipho Kaunda added that while there were staff dealing with catalytic projects in the City, they had been seconded from other units.
 
“Having all the relevant staff from the relevant units sitting under one roof will attract investors and encourage them to make decisions faster. Also, this Office will address the slow pace of implementation of catalytic projects in the City,” said Councillor Kaunda.
 
CITY TO ENGAGE WITH COMMUNITIES ON THE DRAFT ANNUAL REPORT
 
A Full Council seating today, 22 February tabled a report outlining community engagements to take the Draft Annual Report 2016/17 to communities in the form of regional meetings.
 
Engagements will be held in the north, south, west and central regions. This includes a meeting at Princess Magogo Stadium in KwaMashu in the north region, at King Zwelithini Stadium in the south region, Mpumalanga Stadium in the west region and at City Hall in the central region.
 
The cost of hosting the meetings will be R1.6 million and will cover logistics, catering, transport, sound system and stage.
 
EThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede welcomed the report saying it was important for communities to understand development taking place as well as the financial expenditure taking place in the City.
 
“Information is power especially to the poor in our communities. These meetings will assist them to know what is happening in eThekwini. I am happy that we are going out to residents to let them know from the Mayor and other officials what is happening in the City,” she said.
 
REPORT ON CREATION OF HEROES ACRE OPEN AIR MUSEUM AND REBURIAL OF UDF STALWARTS
 
A report on the creation of Heroes Acre Open Air Museum and reburial of UDF stalwarts who were hung in Pretoria in the 1960s and those buried at Red Hill was tabled at a Full Council meeting today, 22 February.
 
Authority was granted to the Head of Parks, Recreation and Culture Unit Thembinkosi Ngcobo to establish a Heroes Acre Open Air Museum at Heroes Acre Cemetery for the reburial of identified UDF struggle heroes in partnership with the NPA Missing Persons Task Team.
 
Ngcobo will also be tasked with commissioning a study on the feasibility of the Open Air Museum and to initiate the creation of an Open Museum website that will contain information on all stalwarts from other cemeteries within Durban.
 
Furthermore, Ngcobo will also be tasked to commission a mapping study and record all stalwarts from different cemeteries in Durban including family cemeteries.
 
The report stated that R800 000 would be given towards the reburial of UDF stalwarts, the commissioning of a feasibility study, the creation of the website and the mapping of all heroes buried in Durban cemeteries.
 
CITY TABLES ADJUSTMENT BUDGET FOR THE 2017/18 FINANCIAL YEAR
 
EThekwini Municipality tabled the adjustments budget for the 2017/18 financial year at a Full Council meeting held today, 22 February.
 
The 2017/18 Medium –term Revenue and Expenditure Framework (MTREF) was approved by Council on 31 May 2017 in accordance with Section 24 of the Municipal Financial Management Act (MFMA).
 
In terms of Section 72 of the MFMA, the performance of a Municipality and its entities must be reviewed during the first half of the financial year and the approved MTREF be revised regarding revenue projections and expenditure trends.
 
The Mid-Year Budget and Performance Assessment was taken into consideration in producing the Adjustment Budget.
 
The tabled report stated that this adjustment budget is appropriately funded and does not result in a revision of tariffs for the year.
 
The report also states that the main reasons for this adjustment budget includes the relocation of budgets between votes to ensure operational efficiencies, adjustments in respect of grant funding allocations to the Municipality and repairs and maintenance as a result of storm damage. Furthermore, it is for the reprioritisation of projects mainly in the eThekwini Transport Authority, Economic Development Unit, Electricity Unit and the Office of the Mayor.
 
EThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede welcomed the adjustment budget saying it was good for the community.
 
This was supported by Deputy Mayor Fawzia Peer who said all fiscal indicators reflect that the Municipality is in a healthy, financial state.
 
“We are spending within our fiscal management and will ensure that the City delivers on our core mandate. This is a wonderful people’s budget which is well spread according to the needs of the community,” said Councillor Peer.
 
Chairperson of the Governance and Human Resources Committee Councillor Barbara Fortein said it was clear that this budget speaks to the needs of the people.
 
“We are happy with the proposed ways that funds will be spent as it will impact directly on our people,” she said.
 
EXCHANGE OF BIRDS BETWEEN UMGENI RIVER BIRD PARK AND MARTINUS STOLK
 
Full Council tabled a report allowing for the exchange of birds between uMgeni River Bird Park and Martinus Stolk to the value of R133 200 at a meeting held today, 22 February.
 
No funding would be required or incurred in terms of the exchange and the costs were on an equal market value basis. Furthermore, the list of birds in terms of the Zoological Information Management System will be updated to reflect the birds received by Martinus Stolk from uMgeni River Bird Park and vice versa.
 
Meanwhile, Full Council also tabled a report outlining the preventive measures to be put in place at Mitchell Park Zoo ad uMgeni River Bird Park to prevent possible avian (bird) flu.
 
ENDS
 
Issued by eThekwini Municipality’s Head of Communications Unit, Tozi Mthethwa.
 
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