Excerpts from the Premier's State of the Province Address 2018
We reiterate our commitment to prudent management of public resources and ethical leadership both of which are essential to inspire greater public confidence.
I am happy to report that Gauteng has been experiencing sustained improvement in audit outcomes.
The recent Auditor General’s Report gave two-thirds of our departments and entities clean audits, coming second after the Western Cape. This is a tremendous achievement as we continue in our quest to achieve 100% clean audits.
The main area of concern for me remains wasteful and irregular expenditure as well as delays in disciplinary processes and criminal prosecution of those suspected of involvement in corruption. This is a matter that will receive greater attention in 2018.
According to the recent report by the National Department of Health, Gauteng is the number one province on the national core standards on the ideal clinic, followed by Kwa-Zulu Natal. Out of 372 clinics, 281 (71%) have achieved the ideal clinic status - that means, they open on time, have good infrastructure, adequate supplies of medicines, clean and staffed by health professionals that practice Batho Pele principles. These clinics are ready for the roll out of the National Health Insurance.
Madame Speaker, we are the only province that has championed and introduced the Open Tender System as part of our crusade against corruption and maladministration. This year we will introduce a Bill on the Open Tender System in the legislature.
As part of our efforts to institutionalise clean governance, build a culture of integrity and fight corruption, I have appointed a civil society-led Ethics and Anti-corruption Advisory Council as our own watchdog on clean governance.
This Ethics Advisory Council is already hard at work to help us crack-down on corruption wherever it manifests itself. Please lend a hand in the fight against corruption.
I have also met with the Special Investigation Unit to ensure that all outstanding cases involving officials in the Gauteng government are speedily concluded so that where necessary, criminal prosecutions can ensue.
It is unacceptable that many forensic investigations are instituted by departments, but there are no consequences on the part of wrong doers.
As a province, we have been outspoken and consistent in the fight against corruption.
I want to lead a province that is underpinned by high standards of service delivery, accountability, integrity and ethics.
To this end, I am meeting all senior-managers across the Gauteng Provincial Government - from director level to Head of Department on 28th February. This meeting will mainly discuss with them the renewal of the public service in the aftermath of the Life Esidimeni tragedy, including signing a pledge to recommit ourselves to Batho Pele principles and values.
The citizens are getting a raw deal from public servants and public officials.We need a new and fresh approach to enforce accountability and delivery. Passing the buck or blame shifting is not acceptable.
I will also initiate lifestyle audit for members of the Executive Council and Heads of Departments.We want to send a strong message that we are committed to probity, transparency and accountability in the conduct of public affairs.I call on all Members of this Legislature to join me in volunteering to subject ourselves to lifestyle audits.
Madame Speaker, crime is one of the perilous problems of our time. I am saddened that we are not yet winning the war against crime because the high rate of crime destroys the dreams of our people who yearn to live in safe and secure communities.
Over the past year, we have worked much better with the leadership of the South African Police Service, community policing forums and other law enforcement agencies in directing resources and the collective energy of communities towards areas which contribute to high crime rate.
Together we have set targets for station, cluster and provincial commanders to reduce crime by 50% in the 40 high priority police stations and 12 clusters.
Working with national government and municipalities, we have added an additional 1 266 police personnel and 859 high performance vehicles to improve police response and visibility. We have also re-introduced the specialised police units to focus on priority crimes such as gender-based violence, trio crimes (which includes car-jackings, house and business robberies), drugs and farm murders. Our police officers are highly motivated by this intervention. They are well equipped to reach any place fast.
Madame Speaker, I want to thank Honourable Van Staden and Honourable Dr Pieter Groenewald of the Freedom Front Plus for meeting with me and Community Safety MEC on the 16th of November last year to discuss how they can contribute to crime fighting in our beautiful province.
Honourable Van Staden has come to the fore to say to the people of Gauteng and their government to say: stuur my asseblief!
I challenge all other parties to join us.
Listen to this part of the Premier's address here -
Listen to the full SOPA 18 here -