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Policy and Budget Speech for the Department of Roads and Transport, delivered by MEC Dr Clifford Mkasi, Mpumalanga Provincial Legislature, Nelspruit 

20 August 2009 

Honourable Speaker Mr Jackson Mthembu
Honourable Deputy Speaker Ms Violet Siwela
Honourable Premier Mr David Mabuza
Honourable Members of the Executive Council
Honourable Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Public Works, Roads and Transport as well as Members of the Committee
Honourable Members of the Mpumalanga Provincial Legislature
Executive Mayors and Councilors present
Traditional Leaders
All stakeholders from the Transport Sector present
Comrades and compatriots
Ladies and gentlemen 

Today, I come before this august house for a second time in a month to yet again deliver a policy and budget speech. This time around though; it is the policy and budget speech for the Department of Roads and Transport. I want to reiterate again that this year would probably be the last time that I present two separate policy and budget speeches for the department of public works, roads and transport. After the proclamation by the state president on the merger of the department of public works and the department of roads and transport, the Department of Public Works, Roads and Transport will have one vote. I want to assure this house and the public at large that the logistical and technical process of merging these two departments is at its final stage. I hope that by the end of this month the task given to the department in this regard would have been completed. 

Honourable speaker, the past seven days have been tragic for the Mpumalanga Province. We have seen an unexpected increase of accidents on our roads, especially during the drizzle that covered some parts of the province in the early hours of Monday, 17 August 2009. The total number of fatalities from these accidents is nine. Our sympathies and condolences go to the families, relatives and friends of the deceased. We wish all those who sustained injuries from these accidents a speedy recovery.  

The department believes that one life lost on our roads is one life too many.

The department will continue with its zero tolerance approach towards traffic offenders and will ensure that those who endanger the lives of other road users receive no mercy. Those caught on the wrong side of the law, will feel the heat of Sivuth’ Umlilo. I am optimistic that together, we will win against the scourge of accidents on our roads.

Honourable Speaker, I also deliver this speech at the backdrop of a beehive of activities that mark the women’s month. I take this opportunity to salute all the women of this country and the world who work tirelessly to make the world a better place. Together we will work towards the total emancipation of women. Malibongwe!! 

Ke mang yo a ka lebalago mogwanto wa basadi ka di 09 Agostose 1956, moo basadi go tswa kutlong tse nne tsa lefase, ba bangwe ba belegile bana, ba etile  pele ke bagalegadi bo Helen Joseh, Lillian Ngoyi, Rahima Moosa le Sophia Williams, ba kopane Union Building? Ke mang yo a ka belaelago ge Strydom le bagwera ba gagwe ba ile ba hlanola direthe le morago basa lebalele, ba nyaka mo ba ka iphihlago gona? Strydom a kgwathile leswika!

As we wind down the women’s month, let us acknowledge all achievements women have made thus far under very unfavourable conditions. We must focus our attention on the road that lies ahead, in that together we can realise a society that is non-sexist; a South Africa where both men and women are equal. As long as women are bound by the shackles of poverty and as long as they are looked down upon, our revolution will not be complete. Our struggle will be a continuum in the road map towards the total liberation of women.  Our conviction for equal rights for women is firm and unshakable.

Honourable Speaker, I also deliver this speech when our department has endured negative media coverage in the recent past. We have undoubtedly broken the record for making the front page headlines in one of our daily publication five times in two weeks; all for wrong reasons. As an elected public representative it therefore becomes my political and executive responsibility to account to this house and the public at large, on matters raised in the daily publication.

Honourable Speaker I will do that mindful of the fact that the Honourable Premier DD Mabuza has on Friday, 24 July 2009, and according to the terms of section 127(2)(e) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, read with the Mpumalanga Commissions of Inquiry Act, 1998, appointed a Commission of Inquiry to investigate and report on alleged procurement irregularities pertaining to the construction of the Provincial Archives Building as well as the construction of the Provincial Disaster Management Centre.

The Commission is chaired by Ms Naome Engelbrecht and will investigate and report to the Premier on alleged irregularities in respect of the procurement of service providers pertaining to the construction of the Provincial Archives Building as well as the construction of the Provincial Disaster Management Centre and the extent to which such conduct complied with the relevant prescribed Government procurement procedures in respect of building projects of this scope and magnitude.

The report will expose; if present, any instances of fraudulent or corrupt acts, instances of the abuse of the Department’s supply chain management system as well as all irregular, unauthorised and fruitless and wasteful expenditure incurred in respect of the procuring of the required services pertaining to the above-mentioned building projects. The report will also identify all persons or entities (including public servants) involved in, or responsible for such acts of abuse or wasteful expenditure. Firm recommendations regarding possible criminal or disciplinary steps will be included in the report. The report will also make firm recommendations in respect of the improvement / enhancement of the departmental procurement system within the prescribed procurement framework.

The Commission has been instructed to investigate and report to Honourable Premier Mabuza before or on 30 September 2009 and any person with information regarding the two projects is free to forward it to the Commission.

The appointment of the Commission of Inquiry is a demonstration that the Provincial Government is committed to clean and transparent Governance, and it is also our stated intention to expose and eradicate corruption and malpractices, both inside and outside of Government, as well as to ensure that the non-adherence by public servants to applicable regulatory prescripts and policies does not go unpunished.

Honourable Speaker, it would therefore be irresponsible and unlawful for me as an elected public representative and a member of the executive council, to respond to media probes on the two projects while the Commission has not yet concluded its task. In a properly co-ordinated press conference, our colleagues from the media were briefed about these intricacies and I never thought we would continue to live under siege.

On other issues of alleged irregularities in the former Department of Public Works we can report that the Integrity Management Unit is about to finalise its investigations and will submit it to the department in a few days’ time. The so called report that is in the hands of certain sections of the media resembles the interim report from the IMU that is incomplete and still requires factoring in of more information from documents and comments from certain people before it can be finalised. It would therefore be premature and irresponsible on my part to start acting on the contents of this interim report.

I however want to make an undertaking to this house in particular and the public at large that, as this has become a matter of public interest; we shall within the prescript of the law, communicate to the public all matters related to the final report and about any possible action we might take against any wrong doing.

Our relationship with the media will always be cordial and we will correct one another where we feel the reporting is misleading and unbalanced. Reporters must report objectively and responsibly and not go overboard.

Government remains more committed than ever in uprooting corruption and any corrupt tendencies. We will do so in a manner that is transparent, free and fair, affording all citizens the right to defend themselves. We do so because we are a democratic state and we respect the rights of all citizens.

Honourable Speaker, we remain resolute in bettering the lives of our people. This is our mandate and we dare not be distracted. Allow me to quote from His Excellency, President Mr Jacob Zuma during   his State on the Nation Address:

"For as long as there are South Africans who die from preventable disease;
For as long as there are workers who struggle to feed their families and who battle to find work;
For as long as there are communities without clean water, decent shelter or proper sanitation;
For as long as there are rural dwellers unable to make a decent living from the land on which they live;
For as long as there are women who are subjected to discrimination, exploitation or abuse;
For as long as there are children who do not have the means nor the opportunity to receive a decent education;
We shall not rest, and we dare not falter, in our drive to eradicate poverty."

Honourable Speaker and Honourable Members, these are the words that guide and inform our strategic vision for this policy and budget speech. We must remain resolute in discharging our duties. Working together, we have the capacity to realise our goals and objectives, insisting on, among other things, fiscal discipline, re-organisation of expenditure patterns and careful planning.

I stand before you to account for the year gone by and to outline the plans for the year ahead.

The department has four programmes, i.e. Administration, Road infrastructure, Freight and Public Transport and Traffic Management.


Honourable speaker, allow me to report to this house that the department managed to spend 100% of the 2008/09 financial year adjusted budget of R1, 703, 355. This means that no budget was sent back to treasury because of under expenditure. It was not the case of aimless marathon spending spree in order to comply, but we spent our budget wisely with value for money.

The Auditor General has also given us a clean bill of health. For yet another year in succession, the department received and unqualified audit report. We further managed to collect R283 million on own revenue against a projected budget of R220 million.

To strengthen governance issues in terms of the PFMA, the department was granted approval by the Provincial Treasury to have its own Audit Committee from the 2008/09 financial year. The Audit Committee was appointed with effect from June 2008 and approved the three year strategic plan as well as the one year internal audit plan for the 2008/09 financial year.

To further improve on the payment of suppliers, the department will continue to install the transversal financial system at the following offices: Rolle, Dingledale, Mhala, Moretele, Wakkerstrom, Greylingstand, Kinross and Msukalikwa.

Skills development

Honourable speaker, in terms of our plan for 2009/10 financial year, we will finalise the development of a Human Resource strategy. Through this strategy, we want to retain and attract required skills to strengthen our labour force thereby improve service delivery. An amount of R4 million is set aside to offer 167 bursaries to prospective employee as well as officials employed by the department. We have put aside R1, 2 million meant to recruit 40 orphans and place them on our learnership programme as part of our effort to fight poverty and at the same time impart skills to the poorest communities. We awarded a total of 571 bursaries in the various fields the majority of which were awarded to previously disadvantaged young men and women to train as traffic inspectors. Another 692 employees benefited from our ABET programme whereas 125 learners and 25 interns were trained. We also reviewed four policies in the internal controls environment.


The department’s communication strategy has surpassed more than 90 departments in the country over the past financial year. This led to the department receiving the Provincial Ubungcweti Award by the Office of the President. Our programmes and activities were communicated and filtered to every corner of the province and beyond.

Road Infrastructure

Honourable speaker, during the 2008/09 financial year the Roads Infrastructure programme accounted for 51% of the total budget. We have completed the following projects:

  • 16 coal haulage route designs
  • Langkloof – Verena
  • Manyeleti – Cottondale
  • Fernie – Amsterdam T- junction
  • Elukwatini storm water drainage
  • Delmas – Leandra
  • Nelspruit – Kaapse Hoop
  • Sabie – White River
  • Rocky’s Drift – Airport
  • Nelspruit – White River
  • Ermelo – Morgenzon
  • Morgenzon – Standerton
  • Carolina – Machadodorp
  • eMalahleni – Verena
  • Middelburg – Stoffberg, and
  • Makometsane bridge

Honourable speaker, the department will design the following projects during 2009/10 financial year at a budget of R 29, 687 million:

  • Piet Retief Traffic Control Centre weighbridge
  • Mooiplaas – Ekulindeni
  • P95/1 (from Limpopo border to Gauteng border between Groblersdal and Bronkhorstspruit)
  • P95/1 (from the Gauteng border south of Bronkhorstspruit to Delmas)
  • Kendal power station – Kleinkopje mine
  • Ogies – Balmoral
  • Grootvlei - Balfour

The department will complete the following major roads in 2009/10 financial year at a budget of R256, 544 million:

  • P166/1 (Mbombela bypass)
  • Barberton – Bulembu
  • Lefiso – Marapyane
  • Sibange – Madadeni (we have completed designs from Sibange   to Boschfontein, construction will start in the next financial year)
  • Manzini – Swalala

As part of our effort to improve the condition of our roads, the department will continue to upgrade and rehabilitate the following roads during the 2009/10 financial year at a budget of R213 million:

  • Rolle – Oakley
  • Swaziland – Diepdale
  • Daantjie – Luphisi
  • eMalahleni – Ogies
Road maintenance

Honourable speaker, we have set aside a budget of R20 million for the Siyatentela project and 2 000 job opportunities will be created through road maintenance. The Siyatentela project is targeting the women headed household without any source of income and this is part of our contribution towards reducing poverty and unemployment.

In the 2009/10 financial year, an amount of R160, 9 million has been set aside for routine road maintenance which includes amongst others: install, repair and replace culverts, road signs, guardrails, km markers as well as patching surface defects. 

During the course of 2007/08 financial year, a coal haulage conference was convened and we agreed with our stakeholders on the coal haulage network grid and funding. We are pleased to report to this august house that Eskom had funded the following projects and shall be complete during 2009/10 financial year.

  • Road between Hendrina – Van Dyk’s Drift and Middelburg  - Bethal junction.
  • Bethal – Standerton junction up to Charl Cilliers turnoff.
  • Bethal – Standerton

We will continue to constructively engage the private sector to leverage the full potential of public private partnerships to meet the funding demands.  

2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup Projects

Honourable Speaker, allow me to inform you about two major projects for 2012 that we are currently engaged in. i.e. Mbombela multi-modal infrastructure and the N4 bypass. The department is pleased to announce that the Mbombela multi-modal infrastructure and P166/1 (N4 bypass) will be complete before the end of the 2009/10 financial year.  An amount of R205, 544 million is set aside for the P166/1 (N4 bypass) project. 

Public and Freight Transport


During the course of 2008/09 financial year, the department completed the following Integrated Rural Mobility and Access (IRMA) projects in the following municipalities:

  • Nkomazi East and West – Bus shelters
  • Mbombela - Rehabilitation of Elandshoek bridge, construction of bus shelters in Nsikazi, 12km walkway covering Mganduzweni, Jerusalem and Phola; and 10km walkway covering Zwelisha, Swalala and Newskom.
  • Albert Luthuli- Culverts at Nhlazantshe, Ngodini, Mayflower, Ngodlomezi, Ebukhosini, Mooiplass, Lochiel, China, Holoba, Mpuluzi, Syde East Dewet and Nordern. Traffic calming at Tjakastad. Regravelling of street and installed drainage system at Embuleni Hospital and the home of the elderly. Construction of pedestrian bridges in Mpuluzi, Mayflower and Emantini(Fernnie)
  • Dr J S Moroka- Construction of bus shelters and walkways in Matshiding, Phaake, Vaalbank and Siyabuswa.
  • Finalised designs for multi-modal public transport facilities for Steve Tshwete and Govan Mbeki municipalities.
  • Completed civil works for the Taxi part of Mbombela multi modal facility.
  • A total of 5 600  bicycles and 2 900 from National department were donated to learners throughout the Province and a further 1 500 subsidised bicycles were allocated to workers in rural areas of the province

The scrapping of old and unsafe taxi vehicles and their replacement with New Taxi Vehicles (NTVs) with better safety features is on track. To date, over 1 894 old taxis have been scrapped and R96.6m has been paid out to taxi operators as scrapping allowance.

In the 2009/10 financial year, the department will donate 4 000 bicycles and 36 animal drawn carts. The donation of bicycles will be augmented by the subsidisation of 1 500 bicycles and R5, 5 million is set aside for this task. These bicycles will be distributed in the following municipalities: Dipaliseng, Mkhondo, Albert Luthuli, Goven Mbeki, Delmas, Thembisile Hani, Dr J.S Moroka, Steve Tshwete, Acornhoek, Thulamahashe, Manyeleti, Rolle, Nkomanzi, Mbombela, Umjindi and Thaba Chweu.

The department has targeted 1 500 OTV’s to be scrapped during the 2009/10 financial year.

Honourable speaker, the department will subsidise commuters at a budget of R385 million.

R43 million has been set aside to finalise the Mbombela multimodal public transport facility in time for the 2010 soccer spectacle.

The department will construct pedestrian bridges in Mkhuhlu and Marite as well as the culvert at Acornhoek during 2009/10 financial year. An amount of R15 million is set aside for this task.

Scholar transport has been transferred to the Department of Public works, roads and transport as a mechanism to enhance service delivery. The department is currently setting up systems to implement this project.

Traffic Management

To date we have rolled out the BPM in the following municipalities: Bushbuckridge (Mhala), Nkomazi (Malelane), Steve Tshwete (Middelburg), Pixley Ka Seme (Volkrust), Dr JS Moroka (Libangeni) and they are functionally. 

The department will conduct an impact study on Best Practice Model to determine the functionality of the system and R1, 000 million is set aside for the study. The study will assist us to improve the system as we continue to roll it out to the remaining municipalities.

The fight against fraud and corruption is being intensified by conducting audits and inspections in our testing stations.

During the 2009/10 financial year, the department plans to reduce fatalities and accidents by 15% as a contribution towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals to half unnatural deaths by 2014. This will be done through conducting 1 872 road blocks, nine road shows, eight rest stops as well as introducing unmarked law enforcement vehicles.

Honourable Speaker, let me inform the house that despite the recent spate of fatal road accidents that took place between the 14 and 17 August 2009, we are having a progressive decrease in the number of fatal crashes and fatalities on our roads. During the 2008 festive season, we were rated second best nationally in reducing fatal accidents in the country. During the 2009 Easter holiday and we were rated as a number 1 province in having succeeded to reduce road accidents in the country.

Allow me Honourable Speaker, to take this opportunity to table the budget for the Department of Roads and Transport for the 2009/10 financial year for approval by this house as follows:

  • Administration: R285,906 million
  • Roads Infrastructure: R1 089,016 billion
  • Public and Freight Transport: R515,368 million
  • Traffic Management: R248,656 million
  • Total: R2 138,946 billion

Honourable Speaker, I therefore request the legislature to approve the budget of R2138,946 billion.


Honourable Speaker, allow me to take this opportunity to thank the Honourable Premier David Mabuza, Members of the Executive Council and Members of the Provincial Legislature for their support and guidance. I will also like to thank the stewardship of the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee, Honourable Bonakele Majuba and members of the Portfolio Committee on Public Works, Roads and Transport for their oversight role.

Allow me to also thank the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Provincial Treasury and the Auditor General for their advisory roles.

Lastly, let me pay a special tribute to the Acting Head of Public Works, Roads and Transport, Mr Mathabatha Mokonyama, the Management Team and all officials in the Department of Roads and Transport for a job well done in the previous year. I am looking forward to an even better performance in the 2009/10 financial year.

I thank you

Issued by: Department of Public Works, Roads and Transport

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