The main objective of the Small Town Rehabilitation Programme is to create a safe and clean environment that will result in investment retention, attraction and expansion. In the process short term jobs are created through the infrastructure upgrades while more sustainable jobs are created through the private sector investment likely to be attracted into the nodes with a potential for further growth.
Small Rural towns continue to face a number of challenges due to the way the towns emerged and evolved, with some starting off as rural service centres, serving a village population. The programme commenced in the financial year 09/10 and its impact is beginning to be realized as seen in the small towns of Melmoth, Nquthu, Nkandla, UMzimkhulu, Harding and Ladysmith.

The intention is to ensure that the competitiveness of these small towns is enhanced, in order to attract investment and to retain the current investors. A total budget of R 342, 2 million has been spent in the past MTEF and a budget of R 108, 497 million has been set aside in the 2013/14 financial year to continue supporting the municipalities in driving the rehabilitation initiative.

To-date, a total of 2500 employment opportunities have been secured through the programme. We had initially set ourselves a target of supporting 6 additional towns; however this target was exceeded by 3 additional towns. This brings a total number of towns supported to date to 27 and a further 6 will be prioritised in 2013/14.

Formalisation of Towns
Regarding the formalisation of towns, good progress has been made which has led to the formalisation of Ndwedwe and Maphumulo. Other municipalities that have been assisted through this program include Jozini municipality in the development of Ndumo and Ingwe municipality with the adoption of schemes for Creighton, Donnybrook and Creighton.

In the coming financial year, 13 towns, namely, Manguzi, Mbazwana, Jozini, Hlabisa, Ntambanana, Tugela Ferry, Pomeroy, Imbumbulu, Dududu, Turton, Weenen, Ekuvukeni and Charlestown have been identified for formalisation.

Small Town Rehab Presentation to 2010 Municipalities
Small Town Rehab Report