The Sedibeng Executive Mayor, Cllr. Mahole Simon Mofokeng delivered his annual State of the District address (SODA) on Tuesday 26 May 2015 at the Vereeniging City theatre. Under the theme ‘Celebrating the Achievements of 21 Years of Democratic Local Government’, his address focused mainly on the municipality’s programme of action for the year and beyond, the briefing covered wide-ranging economic, political, and social matters.
The address was publicly viewed by the people of Sedibeng through a satellite broadcast around the district, and by many seated at home on DSTV. The event was attended by 600 guests at the Vereeniging Civic Theatre. Four (4) satellites were activated and viewed at the Saul Tsotetsi Sports Complex Hall in Sebokeng, Sicelo Multi-purpose Centre in Midvaal, Ratanda Multi-Purpose Centre. In Lesedi and also Vanderbijlpark Sakekamer, members were gathered at the Three Rivers Lodge to view this broadcast.
Service delivery progress was the centre of the Mayors’ address, commitments and the municipality’s achievements of the past financial year included remarkable awards for clean audit for the best performing municipality in South Africa.
He furthermore touched on the growth of the retail centres; he singled out the recent developments of Sedibeng which included Thabong Shopping Centre in Sebokeng, Evaton Shopping Mall, President Hyper, River Walk in Three Rivers and Savanah City residential houses in Meyerton which are the economical facets implemented in the region in the current financial year.
In his speech the Executive Mayor expanded on the key developmental areas of advancing Sedibeng into a Metropolitan city and most fundamentally improving Growth and Development Strategy and 2015/16 Integrated development plan (IDP) and budget allocated based on the priorities agreed with the stakeholders for the year.
The Vaal River City Development is one of the key projects in the Southern side that accelerates economic transformation of the Sedibeng District area and it is among the five Development Corridors announced by the Premier during his February 2015 State of the Province Address.
The development corridors are a public private partnership through which a balanced economic growth, infrastructure development, sustained employment and significant economic empowerment across the entire Gauteng City Region will be achieved. The Vaal River City development is estimated to be worth between R7 and R11 billion and will create approximately 7 500 jobs in the construction phase alone and also facilitate economic growth in the region.
This year’s state of the district address noted all the future plans with regard to human settlementsover the next four years. Over 120 000 houses in the Southern Sedibeng Corridor will be built, amongst the areas are; Boiketlong, Golden Gardens, Evaton, Vereeniging, Savanah City as already mentioned, Ratanda and the R59 Corridor.
Mayor further alluded on the remembrance ofthe 113th year of the Peace Treaty of Vereeniging. “This treaty ended the Second Anglo-Boer War better referred to as the South African War, which was between the South African Republic and the Republic of the Orange Free State against the British Empire this is but just one of the historic events which placed Sedibeng on the map of world history”, said Executive mayor.
Sedibeng has established two ‘Game changers’ one is called a ‘hydrotropolis’. It aims to improve local government performance’s forthcoming implementation of the new Metropolitan Precinct, new Retail Developments, Residential Developments, A Marina and Lifestyle Centre along the banks of the Vaal River stretching from Vaal Marina in the East to Vaal Oewer in the West.
The second significant ‘Game Changer’ for Sedibeng will focus on the acceleration and development of the ‘Agritropolis’. This colossal multi- faceted project includes wide-ranging interventions, among others are the established underperforming farms, release of land for new farming initiatives, improvement of infrastructure to supply inputs to the farms as well as facilitating distribution, realign and expand the Vereeniging Fresh Produce market.
This Southern Corridor is the Provincial plans for the people of Sedibeng. The Gauteng Provincial Government seeks to create an even and equitable development across the province as the premier openly declared.
The theme for this year being “Celebrating the Achievements of 21 Years of Democratic Local Government” clearly stipulate that Sedibeng District Municipality is on the right path to deliver a good service to its residents as it continues to bring transition and radical socio-economic transformation.