GETTING TO KNOW BETTER THE MANAGER COMMUNICATIONS
The Bushbuckridge Local Municipality (BLM) appointed Mr Aubrey M. Mnisi as the head of Communications from the 1st of September 2015. The Municipality has been with the acting manager for more than 6 months. My appointment coincides with the last mile of the current term of council as the 2016 local government election are drawing closer. The latter rings a bell to all of us both council and administration to work even harder, for the Communications Unit it means two critical paramount issues: Changing the perception of the community towards government and BL M as local government and ensuring that the community is furnished with accurate information, continuously, constantly and that civil education is prioritised..
I bring along over 13 years of work experience in the municipal administration. I was first appointed in BLM in the year 2002 to date. I am a graduate of a Bachelor degree in Administration from the University of KwaZulu Natal; hold a diploma in Business Computing Skills. Completed a Certificate in Executive Leadership Municipal Development Programme from the University of Pretoria. I recently completed my two years course work for the Masters of Business Administration (MBA) degree and currently completing my thesis studies. The work experience gained over the thirteen (13) year period within local government and my academic qualifications perfectly place me in my new role.
A number of local municipalities have experienced protests by communities; the latter could be attributed to a number of factors including poor communication, lack of civic education, social discourse between the communities and their elected representatives. It is our collective responsibility to ensure that we consult the public, consolidate the needs into the municipal bible, the IDP; implement the IDP and budget, report back to the communities and continuously review our performance. Communication is a shared function that requires constant consultation, sharing of information and to be responsive.
Communities have to play their part; they need to protect the infrastructure that the government is investing in, destroying government infrastructure is not assisting instead it destroys the good work done and takes us back. The municipality together with traditional councils and all political parties shall work together to educate the general public about negativity of destroying government property. Whenever the community engages into protests, they shall not damage or destroy their civic infrastructure.
We call upon all members of the BLM community to work with their councillors, ward committees, CDW’s and municipal officials in ensuring that services reach all wards. They shall make use of the 11 municipal regional offices to report any breakdown in municipal services.
Lastly, the community is expected to pay for services like water, sewerage and refuse removal as this is the only revenue base for the municipal income, withstanding the grants from national and provincial governments.