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CITY OF uMHLATHUZE international best practice, has embarked on efforts that are aimed at improving efficiencies around the red tape to improve service delivery and doing business. The outbreak of COVID-19 has continued to send shockwaves around the globe. South Africa and uMhlathuze have not been spared of its ravages.

N2 highway upgrade between Mtunzini and Empangeni

This high-class estate will consist of an upmarket hotel and residential units. Coupled with the beach development precinct and the future plan to revamp the Tuzi Gazi Waterfront, the face and the landscape of uMhlathuze will change completely for the better. All environmental studies required have been completed successfully. The work will begin later this year. Underground infrastructure has been laid in eMpangeni opposite Qalakabusha Prison, where the city, together with the provincial and national governments, is building 10 000 mixed-use houses including stand-alone flats and subsidised units. This is a new suburb that will include all amenities such as schools, healthcare and recreational facilities.

uMhlathuze has formulated an economywide COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan that aims to bring the economy back into a growth trajectory. A new airport construction project is in the pipeline. Environmental studies are in progress. The council receives quarterly reports on progress on these projects. The city’s self-funded budget is also an indication that its revenue collection base remains healthy although it can be improved, thus reducing reliance on government grants. We want to assure the people who elected us to serve them that we are a caring government and all we do is towards the betterment of their lives.

All underground infrastructure has been laid. Overground services such as road storm water drainages have been completed. More than 10 000 houses will be built.

We are aware of the challenges they are facing and are tackling them headon. It may take time, but by working together with them, we shall conquer.

The relocation of the city’s airport is also underway with recent studies conducted showing positive projections. An airport city will be developed including shopping centres and other amenities.

Residents, businesses and investors often complain about the red tape they experience in their dealings with the city. It can lead to frustrations, inefficiencies and lost opportunities. As a result, uMhlathuze, as a responsive municipality and in keeping with

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Municipal Focus

Mindful of that, uMhlathuze has formulated an economywide COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan that aims to bring the economy back into a growth trajectory. The city continues to be the epitome of clean governance, and it is reflected in the recently acquired clean audit results having obtained five consecutive clean audits. Investors want to know how the local government of the area they intend investing in is run, therefore, our credibility is crucial to their decisionmaking processes. This means taxpayers’ money is directed where it is meant to go, that is into service delivery projects within the prescribed period. “The ending term of office has been characterised by a harmonious political climate not only in Council, but also in the community we serve. We prioritised engagements and communications with all social and statutory structures and improved relationship with traditional authorities drastically. “We have changed the landscape of the City of uMhlathuze in all corners and created a conducive environment for companies to trade and helped develop SMMEs mainly for the youth, women and disabled people. We thank everyone who has played a meaningful role in the development of our people during this term of office and have high hopes that the city will continue to rise amid all challenges,” Mhlongo concluded.

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Municipal Focus Volume 52  

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