Premier Mabuza Commits Rehabilitation Centre, Industrial Park and Skills Hub For Delmas


J NTIMBA | DELMAS

SAPS Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza has committed to build the rehabilitation centre, industrial park and skills hub aimed at benefitting the citizens of Victor Khanye Municipality. The Premier made the commitment on Friday at a meeting with the Victor Khanye Municipality business people, after they had complained to him about the environment that it was not conducive for their businesses to thrive. They complained to the Premier that the youth within their small town of Delmas were extremely involved in alcohol and drug abuse. They broke into their businesses and troubled their clients by pickpocketing on them. They told the Premier that Delmas was a "small town to manage" however, criminal activities made it difficult to grow it economically. They asked the Premier to ensure that the youth were provided with education, as they were always wandering in the streets and committing crime. They further told the Premier that municipality did not economically benefit the local people; such that local entrepreneurs opted even to pay bribes to do catering work for the municipality. They said there was nepotism in the issuing of municipal tenders and that the political leadership had business interests in the municipality. They said there were 16 mining companies within the municipality and all of them did not benefit the local people. They also raised a concern to the Premier that the mining sector seemed to be taking prime land, which was supposed to be for agricultural activities. They however commended government that they did not have problems with water and electricity in a very long time. In his response, Premier Mabuza said the business people needed to establish a business forum and speak in one voice. "We cannot meet in this fashion because you have been called by me. You need to organize yourselves, look for opportunities that can benefit this area. There should be a structure that would direct development in this area. As a provincial government, we still want to pursue the idea of a cargo airport in this area, but we are not sure about the idea of a casino. I guess it will dilute this small community and bring criminal and many problems that come with development. "I have personally observed that the youth here is always high on drugs, to deal with this problem of alcohol and drug abuse, we are therefore going to open a rehabilitation centre and have these youth rehabilitated. If it comes to a push, we will have to take them forcefully for rehabilitation, because we cannot allow these children to destroy themselves. I want to create a safe and a conducive environment for all of you to do business," said Premier Mabuza. The Premier added that the provincial government would further build a skills hub and an industrial park in order to assist with job creation in the municipality. He said one of the mining companies Anglo-American, had agreed to contribute money in the establishment of a skills hub in order to train the youth so that they would be absorbed and work in the mining sector. "I am toiling with the idea of creating an industrial park. Since there are so many mining companies in this area, we want to create businesses and house them in that industrial park that would do services in the mines. "That industrial park can house businesses in agriculture, and whatever business that is available in the agricultural sector could be sourced from the same industrial park, including the basic services such as welding and painting, they should be housed in the industrial park which would serve as a hub for small and big businesses," said Mabuza. The Premier urged the local business people to "stay focused" and build their businesses instead of doing everything from catering to construction. "If you want to be serious business people, you must be focused. Do not be everywhere. Do not front, when you do that, you will deprive yourselves an opportunity to get experience in the work place. When you front, you are not a businessperson but a broker. If you get an opportunity work on it yourselves. "The tactic to master this is how you network amongst yourselves and create partnerships. If you see someone succeeding, appreciate and learn from them. Business people are always innovative, therefore you must work together and shape up your businesses," said Mabuza. He asked the leadership of the municipality should “not to be arrogant to the people, but be humble and be grateful" that they were elected to lead. He said government would continue to build the RDP houses and remove people from the informal settlements as well as build the roads as needed by business.