Mop-up operations following days of incessant rain

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KZN Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) is taking stock of the four days of heavy rain- and snowfall that caused numerous weather-related incidents across the province as a result of the cold front between 12 and 15 May. The department is also embarking on a clean-up operation to ensure that life throughout KZN returns to normal.

“We have logged and responded to a large number of incidents, including flash floods, which impacted on both public infrastructure and private property and disrupted lives in most parts of the province. On a positive note, the incessant rain has brought some relief to our water reservoirs, most of which, however, still remain below their capacity,” said KZN MEC for Cogta Nomusa Dube-Ncube.

Over the past weekend, KZN had experienced inclement weather conditions caused by a cold front moving in from the west as predicted by the South African Weather Service. This had resulted in extreme low temperatures, strong winds and heavy rainfall which caused localised flooding. Several snowfall-related incidents were reported in the western interior of the province, including the Drakensberg.

“We are pleased to report that all reported incidents were attended to promptly by our disaster management teams which provided immediate disaster relief to all affected communities. We are still assessing the long-term impact of damages to roads, public infrastructure and facilities as well as private properties and we continue to offer assistance to all concerned,” said Dube-Ncube.

KZN Cogta’s disaster management teams worked round the clock throughout the weekend and beyond in close cooperation with all District Disaster Management Centres that serve individual municipalities. The most affected municipalities included uThukela, uMkhanyakude, eThekwini, Ugu, Ilembe, King Cetshwayo, uMgungundlovu and uMzinyathi.

“Every new disaster puts our facilities to the test and we get better and better at responding to crises on the ground with shorter response times and more comprehensive relief packages. I would like to thank all our disaster management teams for their dedication which has saved many lives and mitigated the impact of many disasters for the communities that have no one else to turn to when disasters strike,” said Dube-Ncube.

For more information contact: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220

ENDS

 

body of Nquthu teacher believed to be a flood victim found

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The body of a forty-eight (48) year-old man whose car was swept away by flash floods near Nanakazi River in ward 1 of Nquthu municipality has been found in the middle of Gubazi River.

Mr Vincent Sbusiso Mcube,  is believed to be a teacher at Ntabasibahle High School in Qhudeni (Nquthu Municipality).

The deceased went missing following torrential rains that swept through the province of KwaZulu-Natal over the past four days, causing sporadic incidents of damage in various parts of the province. The car was recovered yesterday and this afternoon the police divers managed to recover the man’s body.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) MEC has extended a message of condolence to the family. Rapid response and disaster management teams have been deployed to support the family and conduct home circumstance report which determines the needs of the family.

For more information please contact: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220

 

 

Disaster teams intervene to assist communities in distress as bad weather continues

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KZN disaster prevention and management teams are intervening across the province, following the extreme weather induced by the cold front which in some areas has led to localised flooding.

There has been a number of sporadic incidents responded to last night.  These include the 22 people who were trapped inside the bus as it got submerged into the water near Nseleni outside Richards Bay. Swift responses by the disaster teams from King Cetshwayo municipality and uMhlathuze ensured that all passengers were rescued to safety.

The other Bakkie reportedly with three passengers was also rescued and all passengers are safe.  We are still frustrated by some people and drivers who attempt to drive across flooded roads despite all the warnings we are issuing.

The preventative evacuation of at least 200 people in Mzingwenya near Richards Bay was also carried out successfully and the communities are being assisted with all emergency needs until the situation is safe for them to return to their homes.  We urge communities to cooperate with our teams and move when asked to do so.

In uGu District we have received reports of few mud housing structures collapsing in uMzumbe municipality (2 houses), in uMdoni (6 houses), in uMuziwabantu (ward13, 2 houses).

At this stage there are no reported fatalities as a result of the bad weather across the province.  Disaster teams continue to monitor what is happening in various areas.

The province has activated Joint Operations Centres across all municipalities to ensure rapid responses on the ground.

We are monitoring mostly the low lying areas of the province and in informal settlements where the risks of landslides and damage to makeshift structures are likely to occur.  Many of the province’s roads are wet and slippery hence we also appeal to all road users to exercise extra-caution.

Issued by the KZN Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs:

For more information please contact: KZN Cogta spokesperson Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220.

 

 

Desalination plant relief for northern KZN

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The MEC for the department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Ms Nomusa Dube-Ncube, Minister for Water and Sanitation Nomvula Mokonyane and Deputy Ms Pamela Tswete today, officially opened the 10 megalitre Richardsbay Desalination Plant, which provide relief to thousands of residents within the Mhlathuze Local Municipality.

The plant which cost R300 Million is the first of its kind in the province and is a result of the drought that has decimated water reserves across the province. Its construction took seven months and created 152 job opportunities.

Speaking during the official opening ceremony for this plant, Minister Mokonyane said that no expenses would be spared in government’s effort to ensure that citizens have access to proper drinking water, even as the country grapples with a severe drought. “This plant is a symbol of hope for communities as it reflects our willingness to think outside of the box in order to meet the needs of our communities. We know how much water means to our suffering communities and the positive impact its availability creates for the business community” said Mokonyane.

This desalination plant is a giant leap and it diversifies the sources of water within this Municipality.

Municipalities in the province will continue to receive support in the implementation of drought relief programmes from the department of Cogta under the leadership of MEC Dube-Ncube.

“As the provincial government we are really happy with the level of support that we have received from the national government in the implementation of this project alongside others such as the roll out of water tankers and expansion of water schemes to mitigate the impact of this drought” said Dube-Ncube.

ENDS

entries officially open for 2017 Mandela Day Marathon

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KZN Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta), KZN Department of Arts and Culture and Sport and Recreation, the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the Mgungundlovu District Municipality and uMngeni Local Municipality today officially launched the 6th edition of the Mandela Day Marathon at the Mandela Capture Site near Howick. This fast- growing marathon takes place in Pietermaritzburg every year, starting at the Manayi Hall in Edendale and finishing at the Mandela Capture Site.

This year’s edition will take place on 27 August and is expected to garner close to 15 000 entries. According to KZN MEC for Cogta Nomusa Dube-Ncube, top runners from the across the continent are expected to take part in this year’s marathon as its previous winners have gone on to win other top races in the country, most memorably the Soweto marathon which was won last year by (female) Selam Abere Aleba Chew from Ethiopia who had won the marathon in 2015.

Entries for this year’s race will open on 12 May and close at midnight on 31 July. The number of entries has been capped at 15 000 for all races. The main prize for the main race of 42km will be R100 000, R20 000 for the 21km race and R10 000 for the 10km race.

For more information contact: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220.

Date: 11 May 2017

Ends.

Media Alert: Launch of 2017 Mandela Marathon

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The preparations for the 6th edition of the annual Nelson Mandela marathon are set to be announced tomorrow at the media briefing to be held at the Mandela Capture site.

The marathon which honours South Africa’s first democratically elected president and struggle hero is growing in leaps and bounds each year and  is attracting a lot of international runners at only six years of age.

Organisers of the marathon led by the MEC for  Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta), the Mayor of uMgungundlovu municipality and the Mandela family will on Thursday, 11 May 2017, brief the media about the logistical framework for the 2017 edition of the annual Mandela Day Marathon,

“This year’s launch is expected to attract the nation’s top runners, sporting personalities.  New features to make the race even more exciting will be announced.

The details of the media briefing are as follows:

Date:              Thursday, 11 May 2017

Time:              9H00am

Venue:           Mandela Capture Site, Tweedie

Members of the media are cordially invited to attend and to be on time

For more information please contact: KZN Cogta spokesperson Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220 or Mbeko Nzimande on 0829036327 or Thando Mgaga on 0735412267

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Budget Speech Live Blog

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Follow the conversation on social media using on Twitter #kzncogtabudget2017 and Facebook

Overview of the 2017/18 Budget Policy Speech

Budget Policy Speech 2017/18

Budget Speech Infrastructure Projects

Press Summary: bid to Create Smart Municipalities

Press Summary: Anti-Fraud and Corruption Stance

Press Summary: Disaster Management

Press Summary: Cogta leads in the transformation of the economy

 

Media Invite: Mec Dube-Ncube to unveil radical, pro-poor budget

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KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Nomusa Dube-Ncube will tomorrow, 9 May 2017, present to members of the KZN Legislature and the people of KZN her department’s Budget Policy Statement, for the 2017/2018 financial year.

Among the issues expected to come under spotlight are:

– Municipalities that are owed billions by big business, government departments and residents;

– Role to be played by municipalities in Radical Economic Transformation;

– Progress made in fighting corruption and new measures to prevent it;

– Aggressive plans to eradicate apartheid spatial planning;

– Progress made in the Back to Basics programme and an outline of its second phase;

– Plans to increase the number of municipalities getting clean audit outcomes;

– Targets to bring KZN closer to universal access to water, electricity and sanitation; and

– Strides made in restoring dignity of the institution of traditional leadership and the remuneration of izinduna.

The department’s 2017/2018 Budget will aim to revolutionise Cogta’s approach in the context of Radical Economic Transformation on a scale that has never been seen in KZN before.

Members of the media are invited to attend the Budget presentation, the details of which are as follows:

Date: 09 May 2017

Time: 09:30 AM

Venue: Provincial Legislature, Pietermaritzburg

Media enquiries: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220

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KZN mourns the passing of senior traditional leader from Ugu district

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KZN Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) is deeply saddened to announce the passing of Inkosi Ndabingehlele Chiliza (67) of the Chiliza clan in the Ugu district, in the uMzinto Local Municipality who was a well-known development activist.

This latest death comes as the province has just buried another hard-working community activist and the former Speaker of the uMzimkhulu local municipality who was tragically killed last week.

Inkosi Chiliza had been in and out of hospital for the past two years and succumbed to illness on Saturday.

“Our heartfelt condolences go to the grieving family and the entire community of Inkosi Chiliza whose death has left a void in the esteemed institution of traditional leadership in KZN,” said KZN MEC for Cogta Nomusa Dube-Ncube.

KZN Cogta has noted that Inkosi Chiliza who had served as Inkosi for fifteen years remained committed to serving his traditional community even as his health began to fail.

“The late Inkosi Chiliza will be sorely missed by his community whose members will forever remember his passion for development and his energy in the fight against social ills, such as crime, disease and moral decay,” said Dube-Ncube.

KZN Cogta will advise the public of Inkosi Chiliza’s funeral arrangements once these have been finalised.

For more information contact: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220

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MEC Dube-Ncube mourns the passing of uMzimkhulu speaker

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KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Nomusa Dube-Ncube has expressed her condolences to the family and community of uMzimkhulu Council’s Speaker, Cllr Khaya Thobela, who was shot at in his home Thursday night.  Thobela succumbed to the multiple wounds in the early hours of the morning today.

Dube-Ncube has expressed shock at this brazen attack on Thobela which led to his death and reiterated her earlier statement that the ongoing spate of violence directed at elected public representatives, traditional leaders and municipal officials in KZN’s local government institutions must stop.

“The passing away of Cllr Thobela is a huge blow to our province’s democratic system of local government.   It is unacceptable that yet another councillor in the province has been murdered. We are outraged, angry and shocked at the killing of the Speaker of uMzimkhulu council.  Violence against councillors is deeply concerning.   We have worked very hard since to make KZN a peaceful province and we cannot allow this achievement to be reversed by criminal elements,” said Dube-Ncube.

“We call upon the community to remain calm during this difficult time and allow the law to take its cause.  We also call upon the leadership of the area to work together to ensure peace and stability in the area and resist any temptation to have premature conclusion”; said Dube-Ncube.

Dube-Ncube has also urged the law enforcement agencies to apprehend those responsible for Thobela’s death and called for members of the public to assist and support the police bringing those responsible for this heinous crime to justice.

For more information contact: KZN Cogta spokespersons Lennox Mabaso, 082 884 2403; or Msawakhe Mayisela, 060 966 4220