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Ministers out and about in Province


An influx of government ministers and top ANC officials has seen an unprecedented buzz of activity throughout the Province.

AN INFLUX of government ministers and top ANC officials has seen an unprecedented buzz of activity throughout Kimberley and the Northern Cape over the past few days in the lead up to tomorrow’s ANC 108 birthday celebrations.

Party and country president Cyril Ramaphosa, who will be delivering the January 8th statement tomorrow, has been in the Province since Tuesday and has been active in various areas in Kimberley since Wednesday, conducting door-to-door visits, holding community meetings, visiting the Sol Plaatje University and today will even see him playing a round of golf at the Presidential Golf Day at Magersfontein.

He will attend a church service at the Kimberley Christian Revival Church on Sunday before he leaves.

Deputy President David Mabuza has been equally busy in the Upington region before he arrived in Kimberley yesterday for a blitz and walkabout at the Diamond Pavilion Mall.

Today he is set to attend a march against alcohol abuse, rape and gender-based violence in Hulana Street in Galeshewe.

Secretary-general Ace Magashule focused on the Pixley ka Seme region, attending community meetings, walk-abouts and sectoral engagements in Britstown, Colesberg and Jan Kempdorp.

Last night he presented the Joe Slovo Memorial Lecture at the Social Centre Hall in Galeshewe and today he will also attend the march in Galeshewe.

Various other ministers and deputy ministers also made use of the visit to the Province to get some work done, with the Deputy Minister of Sport and Recreation, Nocawe Mafu, handing over sporting equipment to 30 community clubs at both Douglas and Pampierstad yesterday and today.

This forms part of a Ministerial Outreach Programme in various municipalities throughout the country to enhance the capacity of sport and clubs by providing sport equipment and attire to community clubs.

The Minister for Small Business Development, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, participated in a community funding initiative (Pitch for Funding) yesterday. The programme provides entrepreneurs an opportunity for accelerated access to funding by pitching their business ideas to a panel of experts for immediate decision on non-financial and financial support. The event took place at the Kimberley City Hall.

The Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Ronald Lamola, will visit the Galeshewe Sexual Offences Court in Kimberley today to engage with officials and members of the public on the functioning of the court.

The Galeshewe Court is among 92 Sexual Offences Courts around the country that are aimed at ensuring a victim-centred approach to prosecution that minimises secondary victimisation of complainants.

Earlier this week, Lamola also held an Under-the-Tree Dialogue for men and boys in Upington.

Under-the-Tree Dialogues are being undertaken across the country to engage with men and boys with the intention of changing patriarchal attitudes and beliefs which contribute to gender inequality – a factor which contributes towards gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF).

The Deputy Minister in the Presidency, Thembi Siweya, conducted an oversight visit yesterday to the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley, in order to assess the quality of service delivery and get a sense of the needed sustainable intervention for the facility.

The Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation, Lindiwe Sisulu, used the opportunity in Kimberley to tackle water and sanitation challenges in the Northern Cape and will meet with the premier, Dr Zamani Saul, today.

Several water and sanitation hot spots have been identified and will be visited by Sisulu and the premier, including the Homevale Waste Water Treatment Plant that has ground to a halt due to the recent electrical cables theft and vandalism.

Thereafter, the visit will head to Roodepan where raw sewage is reportedly flooding households and creating a health hazard.

As part of the ANC January 8th activities, the Minister of Employment and Labour, Thulas Nxesi, and Deputy Minister, Boitumelo Moloi, together with representatives of the departments of Justice and Agriculture, Rural Development and Land Reform will be visiting farming areas around Kimberley (Riverton) and Douglas today.

The purpose of the visits is to engage with farmworkers, farmers and labour tenants to assess the working conditions and level of compliance with various labour legislations, accompanied by labour inspectors.

These inspections are aimed at assessing the levels of compliance with labour and occupational health and safety legislations.

It was pointed out by the department that while there are many model compliant employers in the agricultural sector, there were still too many cases of non-compliance and near slave-labour conditions, ill-treatment, unfair dismissals and many other challenges.

The Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Thoko Didiza, also engaged with farmers and organised agriculture earlier this week to discuss wide-ranging issues from drought relief support from government and labour tenant issues. The minster also visited Rust and Vrede farms in Kimberley.

The Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, Ronald Lamola, yesterday also announced the Grade 12 National Offender Results from the Tswelopele Correctional Centre in Kimberley.

He was accompanied by the deputy minister, the national commissioner, the chief operations commissioner, other high ranking DCS leaders, teachers from the six regions, offenders and officials and stakeholders.

The Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, Barbara Creecy, hosted a stakeholder meeting with the fishing coastal community of Port Nolloth yesterday.

The department pointed out in a statement that South Africa has a long history of coastal communities utilising the marine resources for various purposes, using mostly traditional methods of fishing with limited benefit from technology.

“The conditions under which these traditional fishing communities work are harsh and their efforts to provide for themselves and their families are not recognised.

“Many of these fishers and communities have been marginalised through previous fisheries management systems.”

As part of an extensive Small-Scale Fisheries Policy implementation process, the department declared South Africa’s first two small-scale fishing co-operatives in the Northern Cape on September 28, 2018.

The Northern Cape was the first province to have two declared small-scale fishing co-operatives (Aukwatowa and Longtime Hondeklipbaai Primary Co-operatives) that received 15-year small-scale fishing rights.

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