Keetmanshoop – Mariental Mayor Wilhelm Mensah says the unavailability of funds to carry out its duties remains the municipality’s biggest challenge.
He said although the municipality has many plans and programmes aimed at bringing development to the town and delivering quality services to residents, implementing these ideas requires money.
“Lack of funds hinders service delivery. We intend to undertake a lot of projects and programmes and activities over the next four years, but we won’t be able to undertake most of them due to funding,” he told New Era.
Mensah says if the municipality had more financial resources at its disposal, more could have been done to uplift the standard of living of residents and signled out the provision of serviced land and housing, funding of projects, unemployment and poverty as the main challenges the town faces.
He further said the local councillors who are in their second term of office intend to do their utmost best to achieve this. Describing 2016 as a learning year for most councillors, he noted that in their short term in office they have approved four new township extensions, acquired a new fleet of vehicles, and commenced with the provision of toilet facilities for residents of informal areas.
He said more could have been done if more resources were available, but stressed that despite the financial situation the municipality will strive to develop the town. He went on to say the main focus for this year is to enter into public-private partnerships (PPPs) to assist with the servicing of land and housing provision.
They also aim to work with the residents to clean up the town, which is slowly sinking in rubbish, and attract more investors that will create job opportunities for many.
Mensah called on the residents to work with the municipality to ensure that the objectives of 2017 are achieved collectively. “The municipality will continue to engage the residents of Mariental and will create platforms for continuous dialogue,” he stated.