Ncome Museum near Nquthu was filled with nearly 250 participants from various sections of society, including national and provincial government departments, parastatals, business and civic organisations. In line with the Provincial Growth and Development Strategy, Umzinyathi Municipality held a two-day summit together with the KwaZulu Natal Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA). MEC of COGTA, Nomsa Dube-Ncube, was the main guest.
Her speech placed great emphasis on developing the province even though they came from different political parties. She remarked that: “I am pleased to be part of this summit and it is good to know that we all want our cities, towns and the province, as a whole, to develop economically. I always tell Councillors not to fight each other because that has a bad impact on our municipalities and therefore slows down service delivery. This gathering will be eye-opening and helpful to us as government and to our communities. The most important thing is that there is consultation and conversations on how we can move the country forward”.
MEC Nomsa Dube-Ncube also highlighted that Umzinyathi Municipality is building a new kind of municipality where socio-economics are developed. “The summit will help us work together and that will lead us to a common goal. This will also ensure that national and local provisions have the same vision.” Operation Vula seeks to localise the economy by, initially, encouraging the government to buy from SMMEs and cooperatives. It will target specific societal groupings, such as blacks, women, youth and people with disabilities, in the province; align and coordinate enterprises regionally and sectorial; and assist targeted enterprises with skills, funding, and markets for agricultural sectors which were established to build markets for small businesses to sell their vegetables.
Enhancing and growing the four municipalities under Umzinyathi District will require infrastructure, skills, and development training as well as agro-processing and food security.
MEC Nomsa Dube-Ncube concluded by explaining that: “as a province, we should knock on different government doors so that investors know where to invest when they come to the different districts under Umzinyathi. It’s time that we pull together as a province as we know the unemployment rate in our country. People should not rely on municipalities for jobs as they are not a business, but rather look at other means such as being self-employed. Municipalities are struggling as it is so let us continue working together to bring about change in our province”.
The summit envisaged strengthening the public-private collaborative approach towards the achievement of the KZN Vision 2035 in an integrated, inclusive and sustainable manner.