Premier launches Operation Masiphathisane War Rooms in OR Tambo

BY YOLANDA PALEZWENI - JULY 20, 2016

Eastern Cape Premier, Phumulo Masualle, on Tuesday officially launched 'war rooms' for the province's much-lauded Integrated Service Delivery Plan called Operation Masiphathisane at Sulenkama village, in Qumbu, in the OR Tambo District Municipality.

Operation Masiphathisane started three months ago to solve the inconveniences of service delivery that the community is facing. It seeks to craft strategies to combine services and bring them to communities while strengthening proper communication between government and local communities to prevent more service delivery protests. 

The war rooms are set up to drive the Masiphathisane campaign of bringing together communities, stakeholders and government official  to improve service delivery and better relationship community and the government.

“We want to cement this way of work between the government and the community. We quite pleased with the reaction we getting from people because we are looking at how to co-operate and work along with government in a better way than things are,” said the Premier at the launch.

He added that government officials need to start adopting this programme and to see that it succeeds.

“When you have officials that do not appreciate that they are primarily answerable to community, who are the consumers of the service we provide, the absence of that relationship and commitment tends to sometimes be taken out on government [through service delivery protests],” said Masualle.

He said that there is a structure in place to make the daily running’s of the war rooms efficient;

  • The chairperson of the War Room will be the ward councillor;
  • The secretary will be community development worker, who will be managing the operations of the War Room and maintain the liaison between different stakeholders that the community have - the traditional leaders, religious formations, youth formations and women cooperatives  with the officers appointed from all government departments that are engaged with the programme  to form the structure of running the war rooms

The Eastern Cape has been among the provinces worst hit by violent service delivery protests, which often results in the destruction of public infrastructure and thereby, indirectly, hurting its fragile economy.