The Sol Plaatje Local Municipality in the Northern Cape includes the province’s capital, Kimberley.
The city has a glittering reputation for its diamonds, being the centre of the mining rush which attracted fortune seekers from around the world in the late 19th century.
As times have changed, the Sol Plaatje Local Municipality is now striving to become a centre of education, technology and good governance.
Making education history In 2014,
the Sol Plaatje University became the first of two new universities to be opened in post-apartheid South Africa.
The university, which is situated in Kimberley, offers academic disciplines that are informed
by the unique needs and characteristics of the Northern Cape, such as information communication technology
and data science, heritage studies, paleo-sciences and creative writing in African languages.
In December 2019, the university celebrated its fifth graduation ceremony, with 319 students graduating.
Connecting to the world The municipality is on a drive to provide free wifi access to all residents, through the establishment of more than 30 wifi hotspots in Kimberley and surrounds.
“We are headed to the Fourth Industrial Revolution and therefore we have to give access to the youth to do research work, apply for jobs and search for entrepreneurial opportunities,”
said Executive Mayor Patrick Mabilo during the launch of a free wifi hotspot in the community of Kekana Park.
Ensuring good, clean governance The municipality places importance on ensuring effective governance by providing regular training to staff at all levels.
n the past financial year, particular focus was placed on the training of technical and trade workers in water services, and management professionals also received training specific to their professions.
A total of 795 employees went through training.
In the municipality’s latest financial report, Municipal Manager Goolam Akharwaray highlighted that the municipality claimed
fourth place in the top 20 list of municipalities for good governance, in Good Governance Africa’s Government Performance Index 2019.
“We must, to the best of our ability, strive towards clean and transparent governance.
The municipality needs to continue to improve the efficiency of its service delivery,
the sustainability of its finances and the effectiveness, responsiveness and accountability of its administration,” he said.
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