Premier Tsipane speaks rural development

Premier Tsipane speaks rural development
WANTS CHANGE: Mpumalanga Premier Refilwe Mtsweni wants a turn around in the spatial settlement of areas under traditional authorities. PICTURE BY Parliament

The Premier wants sustainable rural livelihoods.

Premier Refilwe Mtshweni-Tsipane has announced the department of traditional affairs is currently working on what is called a ‘Rural Development Chapter’ that will focus much attention on people living in rural areas for serious empowerment. 

The Premier said the Chapter will be inserted into the Intergrated Development Plan (IPD) of municipalities and will work to allocate funds to communities in areas of traditional leadership. 

She addressed the official opening of the 5th Mpumalanga house of traditional leaders at the legislature Wednesday 31 July 2019, speaking rural development.

“These communities also deserve to be uplifted equally in line with the Bill of Rights enshrined in Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic,” she said. 

ALSO SEE: Premier Mtshweni-Tsipane speaks youth unemployment 

She said government should avoid a situation where “the loudest voices in municipal councils determine what type of development must be prioritised for the communities in the rural areas”. 

She said such programmes should be given thorough consultations and proper planning with the involvement of Amakhosi. 

The Mpumalanga house of traditional leaders is led by Inkhosi Sandile Ngomane as chairman, elected in 2017 and succeeding Kgoshi Lameck Mokoena.

“We must ensure that the development of our communities is premised upon proper

consultation and dedicated planning,” the Premier said, adding the department of co-operative governance and traditional affairs is putting the Rural Development Chapter in the IDPs during the current term of office so that it starts working in next term beginning in 2021.

“Chairperson, the question of land ownership lies at the centre of our liberation struggle. Our struggle for freedom was informed by, among others, the need to expedite the restitution of land,” she said.

She urged traditional leaders to work closely with their municipalities in order to 

determine and agree on the land use spatial programme that was approved by government and now needs implementation. 

“Such cooperation,” Mtshweni-Tsipane said, “will reduce tensions and avoid unplanned human settlements that becomes a burden to municipalities when it comes to planning for basic service delivery.

“We further appeal to our traditional leaders not to use arable land for human settlements because this has a potential of discouraging new agricultural investments in their areas and bears the risk of adversely impacting our food security,” she said. 

(edited  by MLM) 

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