Despite the high rate of unemployment in Gauteng, the Gauteng Department of Economic Development (GDED) has failed to provide 55 co-operatives with much needed financial support.
The department spent a whopping R17.1 million on Business Advisory Services and Consultants, instead of financially supporting co-operatives and giving people the ability to become self-reliant.
The 2017/2018 third quarter report indicates that out of a targeted 70 co-operatives in the Enterprise Development programme, the department only managed to provide financial support to 15 co-operatives.
This shows poor planning by the GDED as co-operatives play an important role in job creation and alleviating poverty amongst women, youth and people with disabilities.
Continuous enterprise development is critical to ensuring that the economy of Gauteng grows. A growing economy has more jobs to offer than the stagnation that has occurred under the ANC.
Once again, the ANC-led government in Gauteng is failing to fulfil its mandate to provide micro-financing to co-operatives, that have the potential to contribute to the broader economic objective of job creation and poverty alleviation. This shows that the ANC does not really care about the people of Gauteng.
The MEC for Economic Development, Lebogang Maile, needs to ensure that the remaining 55 co-operatives receive the financial support they so desperately need.
In addition, I will be writing to the MEC for Economic Development and will ask him to
- List the 70 identified co-operatives;
• Indicate which of these co-operatives received financial support from the department; and
• Provide us with a list of Business Advisory Services and Consultants which were used by the department.
The DA believes that the only way to ensure a thriving economy is to create an enabling environment in which small business and entrepreneurship can flourish. Red tape also needs to be eliminated to ensure that entrepreneurs are able to access much needed government funding.
We will continue to hold the MEC accountable and will be closely monitoring the work of this department.