Delegation of the Gauteng Legislature visits George Youth Café

APRIL 13, 2016

George being one of the best run municipalities in the country with clean audits and accolades received the past few years caught the eye nationally and received a high ranking visit from the Gauteng Legislature last week.

The Executive Mayor of George, Aldm Charles Standers received Honourable Ms Refiloe Nt’sekhe, Member of the Gauteng Legislature, DA National Spokesperson, DA Shadow MEC-Social Development and DA Deputy Federal Chairperson and Honourable Mr Ashor Sarupen, Member of the Gauteng Legislature, Former Councillor as well as a Strategist and Resource Optimiser in George.

They visited George in order to see how things are done in a DA-run municipality. Aldm Standers received the delegation on Wednesday, 6 April.

Ms Nt’sekhe said she is also very interested in the social development realm and visited the George Youth Café to see how a community is being pro-active rather than reactive. “I am impressed how things are run in this town. I almost want to stay here,” she said. She commended George for having one of the best transport systems (GO GEORGE) and being prepared to make it economically accessible to every citizen.

Ms Nt’sekhe said the DA is a government in waiting in Gauteng. “When we take over in 2019 we want to have insight into youth programmes,” she said. She said currently there is a critical oversight regarding the youth in Gauteng, especially in being proactive and not reactive.

Nt’sekhe was impressed with George Municipality who manages to stretch a shoestring budget and put programmes in place for the youth and manages to aid in social development. “I am in love with George,” she said.

Honourable Mr Ashor Sarupen, Member of the Gauteng Legislature, said George is an exceptionally well run municipality, which treats its business community, NGO’s and civil society as partners rather than competitors of government. This approach means that it gets more value from each Rand it spends on service delivery. The political leadership, specifically the Mayor, have a real vision for the city and how they want to improve the quality of life for all citizens. His views on the George Youth Café are that the youth café demonstrates the municipality’s commitment to youth. It is more than just a place to hang out, it is a one stop shop to engage the youth, offer training, combat social problems and promote opportunity. If this model could be replicated across the country it would go a long way to contributing to the development of young people.

During their visit, the delegation was treated to a presentation that covers George Municipality’s youth development strategy and also visited the African Skills Village in Thembalethu who partners with the municipality in various development projects. The delegation is looking forward to their next visit to George and the Western Cape. The delegation is looking forward to their next visit to George and the Western Cape.

Image: The delegation meets with officials from George Municipality. In front from left are Ms Refiloe Nt’sekhe, Member of the Gauteng Legislature, Aldm Charles Standers, Executive Mayor of George, Cllr Clareen Remas and Ms Sophie Fanelo, Acting Manager: Social Development. At the back are Pieter Pepler (Manager: Office of the Executive Mayor), Ms Jonel Kerspuy (Youth Coordinator), Cllr Iona Kritzinger, Mr Ashor Sarupen, Member of the Gauteng Legislature, Cllr Marchell Kleynhans, Portfolio Councillor for Social Development, Mr Siphiwo James, Acting Director: Community Services, Mr Shanold Marillac, Senior Manager: Social Development, Shawn Campher, George Youth Café, Cllr Isayah Stemela and Cllr Hendrik Ingo.