Buffalo City Metro Mayor under fire for slow Covid-19 response

Buffalo City Metro Mayor under fire for slow Covid-19 response

- Xola Pakati has come under fire for lack of decisive leadership over Covid-19 response

- The Buffalo City Metro Mayor was slammed for not having a clear plan to deal with the Covid-19 virus

- In a virtual meeting, MPs lambasted the Mayor for not adopting the municipal budget

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Parliament has lambasted Buffalo City Metro Mayor Xola Pakati for lacking a clear plan to deal with the Covid-19 virus.

The Mayor came under fire from Parliament's Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs portfolio committee for failing to present an approved Covid-19 budget and for dragging his feet in adopting a medium term revenue and expenditure framework.

In a virtual meeting on Wednesday night, MPs also lambasted BCM for failing to hold a single virtual council meeting to adopt the municipal budget, which by law must be concluded before the end of June.

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The Metro was also criticised for failing to ensure sufficient testing for Covid-19. Pakati responded that council had sat for two virtual meetings.

When asked whether the Covid-19 response plan had been approved, Pakati said:

"The council has not approved it because the council has not said to make that consideration."

Pakati added that the annual budget and integrated development plan (IDP) would be discussed on Friday.

BCM Chief Financial Officer Ntsikelelo Sigcau said on May 29 the council did not approve the medium term revenue and expenditure framework budget, deciding that they wanted to workshop it first.

In a statement issued by the COGTA portfolio committee on Thursday morning, Chair Faith Muthambi expressed “disappointment” in Pakati’s presentation.

Muthambi said the committee had implored the BCM leadership to “rise to the occasion” of steering a metro where 50% of the population lives in poverty.

The COGTA portfolio committee were also dissatisfied on issues of quarantine sites, how many there were and why so little testing was being done in the Metro's health facilities.

MPs also slammed Pakati for not providing names of the quarantine sites and details on the provision of water.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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