Historic billion-rand budget passed in Kouga

The Kouga Council approved an adjustment budget of over a billion rand at a meeting held on 28 February 2020.

This is the first time in the history of the municipality that a budget of a billion rand has been approved by the Council.

Operational expenditure amounts to R925 million while the approved capital budget is R194 million. This equates to a total expenditure budget of R1,1 billion.

Internally-generated funds make up R56,7 million of the capital budget while R137,9 million is from national government grants and includes nearly R100 million of drought funding that was received from National Treasury in the previous financial year.

The water projects are expected to be complete by the end of June and will ensure that the coastal towns in Kouga have water security in times of drought. This includes the towns of Jeffreys Bay, St Francis Bay and Oyster Bay while Humansdorp is also included.

The drought funding is being spent on searching for groundwater, connecting new boreholes to the water grid, upgrading water infrastructure and identifying the cause for water losses throughout Kouga.

“The main revenue sources are the sale of electricity (R274 million), property rates (R188,8  million), water sales (R75,7 million) waste water management (R50 million) and refuse collection (R37 million) while operational grants amount to R133 million,” said Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks

 

Headlines don’t tell the whole story

Editors, well sub-editors are renown for creating headlines that sell newspapers or entice online readers to ‘click’. That sheep were to be killed on one of St Francis’ most popular beaches was just such, an enticement to read a story. Sadly people don’t always read the full story nor consider the facts and will go off pop, threatening, cursing and worst of all, certainly in South Africa, play the race card. In days of yore writing to a newspaper was a laborious effort, made easier with the advent of the facsimile machine and even easier the introduction of eMail. But now none of those are necessary for we have Facebook where we can say voice our thoughts without considering and become our own critic and news purveyor. Bless Zuckerberg, he has given the man on the street a voice, an opportunity to slant and corrupt the truth and twist the facts.

But there are also those who use Facebook who actually do read in context and think before they put fingers to keyboard. And so it was heartening to read many positive comments on social media with regard to the Khoi San event held at Grannies Pool over the weekend. Heartening in that they countered some of the narrow minded, even racial comments posted when the event was announced. That someone would comment that Grannies Pool is “our” beach illustrates just how little some have adapted to the new South Africa. A foreign reader would be forgiven if he were of the belief that Apartheid is not dead and beaches are still segregated and for ‘white‘s only’.

So sad that there are still those with ‘rinderpest’ mentality and one can maybe understand why politicians like Malema keep screaming whites are racist.

The Khoi San, as do any race, have as much right to the beach as anyone and should they wish to hold an event, providing they follow the correct procedures and conditions, why not? If it was a white privileged event we would expect the event to be authorized without any opposition as it is “OUR RIGHT” after all.

Certainly the slaughter of sheep was a controversial and possibly should not have been the headline but rather just a small component of an historical event for St Francis. The six sheep that were slaughtered certainly had it a lot better than others from their flock that were probably loaded head to tail on a truck and driven in the heat of the day to an abattoir, or worse, to be loaded onto a ship where they would have been confined for weeks before having their throats slit in a halaal slaughter house thousands of miles from home. It is a way of the world and the slaughter was probably a lot less stressful for these sheep and certainly a lot more humane.

That the Khoi San chose St Francis for this event was indeed an honour. There were no incidences and certainly a lot quieter than boisterous, drunken, destructive youngsters the community has tolerate over the summer holidays. Christians follow their rituals and traditions and so Mosley, as do Xhosa, Chinese so why so why not those who were here long before we arrived.