President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Friday lead the fourth instalment of the District Development Model (DDM) Presidential Imbizo in the Sedibeng District Municipality in Gauteng.

The Presidential Imbizo will take place at the Sharpeville Cricket Pitch under the theme: Leave No One Behind.

The visit is part of efforts to roll out the District Development Model (DDM) and lend a helping hand in implementing the accelerated service delivery initiatives.

The Presidential Imbizo affords all social partners, government, traditional leaders, civil society organs (labour, women, youth, persons with disabilities, business) and communities an opportunity to collectively engage on how to best address the immediate challenges and to create conditions for long-lasting stability and development.

The Imbizo in Sedibeng will see leaders from all three spheres of government interact with residents on service delivery challenges which communities have brought to government’s attention, as well plans for the development of this district.

In all districts countrywide, the District Development Model is based on a “One District. One Plan” approach in which all three spheres of government and representatives of civil society jointly plan development.

“This approach aims to address service delivery challenges, advance local procurement and create jobs in ways that promote social cohesion and economic opportunities in the 44 Districts and 8 Metros around the country,” the Presidency said in a statement.

The Sedibeng Presidential Imbizo will be the fourth interaction of this kind, following oversight visits by President Ramaphosa to the North West, Free State and Mpumalanga since his commitment in the February 2022 State of the Nation Address that he would engage with communities throughout South Africa.

“The President will use the Sedibeng visit to assess progress in service delivery and in the implementation of the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan,” the Presidency said.

The Sedibeng District Municipality comprises the Emfuleni, Midvaal and Lesedi local municipalities.

All these municipalities feature high levels of unemployment, skills shortages and aged water and sanitation infrastructure that results in sewer blockages, spillages, pump station breakdowns, water leaks and pipe bursts.

“Government is responding with various actions, including a R700 million allocation to Rand Water to rehabilitate the Vaal sewer network. Funding is also being sourced to upgrade bulk infrastructure, such as electricity, roads, water and sewerage.

“Major progress has been made towards the designation of the Vaal Special Economic Zone (SEZ),” the Presidency said.

The Presidency said the provincial government has received commitments from local investors to the tune of R40 billion and the SEZ holds the potential to create 170 000 jobs over five years.

The special economic zone will ensure an increase in skilled labour, easy access to a strong consumer base and connectivity to suppliers and potential markets.

It will also promote export-orientated industries and local integration. More than 3 000 hectares of land has been secured across all the local municipalities in the Sedibeng District for the SEZ.

Growing Gauteng Together (GGT) 2030 has identified a number of catalytic investment projects in the Sedibeng District, such as :

• The Savannah City housing development;

• Vaal River City and the Vaal University Village precinct;

• A cargo airport and logistics hub;

• The Vaal Special Economic Zone;

• The AB InBev investment project;

• The Vaal Marina development and logistics and mining investments in Lesedi; and

• The Gauteng Highlands projects.

Source: South African Government News Agency

News Reporter