NCOP makes oversight visits across Buffalo City Metro

NOVEMBER 15, 2016

The National Council of Provinces (NCOP) Taking Parliament to the People Programme (TPTTP) kicked off with a series of interactive sessions and oversight visits to educational institutions and economic development centres across the Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality on Monday.

The key focus areas of the 2016 Taking Parliament to the People Programme held from 14 to 18 November 2016 at the Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality are education and economic development.

The programme is held in collaboration with the Eastern Cape Legislature under the theme: “Following up on our commitments.”

Before the oversight visits, the NCOP delegation held interactive sessions on education and economic development to create dialogue on the achievements and challenges facing the economic and education sectors.

The delegation was briefed by the national Department of Economic Development, Buffalo City Municipality and Eastern Cape Provincial Department on Economic Development Land Affairs and Tourism at The Premier Hotel in East London.

Although there were a few concerns, the delegation was satisfied with the presentations and recommended that these departments work on the issues of concern that were raised, such as funding challenges on infrastructure projects, slow progress on the planned development and renovations of the old agro-processing plants, i.e. the Agro-processing Industrial Park in Dimbaza and a lack of roads and railway lines to link the newly planned Dimbaza Agro-processing plant to Bisho, Mthatha and the East London airport.

Also, the other major concern raised was the policy uncertainty between Eskom and the National Energy Department. With these, the delegation urged the departments to provide feedback before the week-long Taking Parliament to the People programme comes to an end on Friday, 18 November.

The delegation was divided into six groups and held two interactive sessions including an education session at the Walter Sisulu University. In attendance were TVET colleges, Setas, University of Fort Hare and the Walter Sisulu University, Master Artisan Academy South Africa and the Mercedes-Benz South Africa Learning Academy.

More than 1 000 residents of the Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality and the surrounding areas will gather at the Abbotsford Christian Centre today (15 November 2016) for the official opening of the Taking Parliament to the People Programme. The opening will be preceded by a public hearing on social development and human settlements.

Oversight visits will also be conducted after lunch to special schools, day care centres and Academy centres, amongst others.

Image: courtesy of www.mercedes-benzsa.co.za