The premier of Mpumalanga, Refilwe Mtshweni-Tsipane said each provincial department shall continue to ring-fence 2% of its total budget for maintenance of existing infrastructure.
“The issue of dilapidating infrastructure will continue to receive attention in the upcoming financial year. We will prioritise infrastructure that is essential in the provision of access to services of government,” said Mtshweni-Tsipane.
She also added that the provincial government has identified Kwa-Mhlanga government precinct as one of the sites that are in dire need of expedited infrastructural maintenance. Mtshweni-Tsipane said work will commence soon and will be completed by the end of the 2021/2022 financial year. She said plans are also under way that will see Mpumalanga having a new tertiary hospital in Emalahleni and that the province has completed the business case development, as well as the clinical brief.
“I am glad to announce that, true to the ideals of the integrated functioning of all spheres of government, the Emalahleni local municipality has apportioned land for the construction of the tertiary hospital. Construction will commence soon,” said Mtshweni-Tsipane.
Last year, Mpumalanga received R645-million to improve access to services and opportunities for people in rural areas. This programme supports, among others:
- The paving of township and rural roads;
- Short-term employment in the education sector such as teacher assistants, screeners and general workers; and
- The employment of social workers. Currently, several projects are being implemented in the following municipalities: Bushbuckridge, Chief Albert Luthuli, Dr JS Moroka, Thembisile Hani and Nkomazi local municipalities.
Going forward, the premier said that Infrastructure South Africa will be responsible for project preparation, packaging, funding pathways and providing strategic oversight over all the gazetted projects that will be funded through the National Infrastructure Fund.
“These projects will create opportunities for support of local manufacturing and development of township economies. “What is critical to note is that not all the proposed infrastructure projects will need new funding, therefore, there is no need to develop other new grand plans,” she added.
Mpumalanga has also completed 21 water infrastructure projects benefiting 45 470 households to the value of R592-million.