R84 M Pro-poor budget for 107 villages unveiled

The Aganang municipality has provided a glimmer of hope for the impoverished communities after tabling a pro-poor budget for the 2009-2010 financial year.

Mayor Manoko Masehela yesterday unveiled an overall budget of R84million earmarked for improvement of services in 107 villages in Moletji, GaMatlala, GaMaraba and GaMashashane.

The budget, which was outlined in the integrated development plan, prioritises the provision of clean water, electricity, infrastructure, creation of employment opportunities, construction of community support facilities, road and transport system.

Operational costs received the biggest slice of the total allocation with a staggering R47, 3 million.

In a bid to improve the dismaying infrastructure, R37,5million has been set aside and R17,5million, R9,3million and R1,8million have been dedicated to roads, electricity and water projects, respectively.

There was thunderous applause when Masehela announced that infrastructure development will include construction of market stalls to support local business.

Water supply is still a major challenge for the people, some of whom share river water with animals.

The water problem was exacerbated by persistent theft of diesel pumps and breakdowns.

With the inevitability of drought, Masehela said they were planning to upgrade the existing water and sewerage schemes and also build new ones.

Although Masehela said they had made significant strides in electrifying several households during the previous financial year, the municipality has been dogged by illegal connections.

The 2009-2010 budget of R9,3million will be channeled to electrification of houses.

The budget was welcomed by taxi operators, who are hopeful that the gravel roads that have been damaging their vehicles will be tarred and bridges constructed.