Press release

Commentary on Eastern Cape SOPA

Executives provide comments and snippets

Eastern Cape State of The Province Address (SOPA)

Key executives from Grant Thornton South Africa, provide commentary following Eastern Cape Premier Pumulo Masaulle’s State of the Province Address this morning on 19 February 2016:

On EDUCATION:

“It is laudable that the Eastern Cape Premier acknowledged that the pass rate of matriculants in the Eastern Cape was not good enough. The province was amongst the three worst-performing provinces (including Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal) registering a disappointing 54% pass rate for Grade 12 pupils in 2015 (an approximate drop of 9% from the previous year).  We therefore commend the Premier’s plan to increase the number of functional schools in the province and we hope that it will indeed improve pass rates at all school levels.”

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Public Sector Advisory at Grant Thornton

On HEALTH

“In the area of health, the Premier’s plan of improving the quality of life and reducing mortality rates in the Province is pleasing. However, the operation of provincial hospitals, health infrastructure and ambulance response times requires serious attention from senior officials in the province. We anticipate that the province will gain valuable experience from being selected by national government to be a National Health Insurance pilot site.” 

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Public Sector Advisory at Grant Thornton

On UNEMPLOYMENT and JOB CREATION

“The Premier’s pronouncements on job creation and economic development in the province need to be more substantial as the province has one of the worst unemployment rates in South Africa.”

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Public Sector Advisory at Grant Thornton

“The Eastern Cape’s strategy of earmarking the tourism, automotive and fishing industries is more convincing as a stimulus to job creation. We are of the view that more needs to be done to make the province competitive. The improvement of provincial, roads as an enabler for economic activity in the province is one important example of what government must do to stimulate growth. In addition tender processes for big infrastructure projects need to be conducted fairly and economically in order for the province to derive maximum value for the money spent on it.”

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Advisory Services at Grant Thornton

On RENEWABLE ENERGY

“With respect to renewable energy, the progress given by the Premier is impressive.  We are of the view that political leaders and senior administrators should explore ways of incorporating historically disadvantaged individuals, and particularly the youth in private sector enterprise development programmes.”

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Advisory Services at Grant Thornton

On MUNICIPAL MANAGEMENT

“We hope that the Premier’s announcement of enforcing accountability and consequence management will be fully implemented. The Eastern Cape over the past five financial years, has received some of worst audit outcomes from the office of the Auditor General which has constantly highlighted irregular, unauthorised, fruitless and wasteful expenditure. The provincial stance of zero tolerance to corruption needs to be practiced across the board.”

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Advisory Services at Grant Thornton

On RURAL DEVELOPMENT

“It is disappointing that the Premier did not fully outline a clear programme for the rural development especially as these rural areas are beset with some of the worst socio-economic challenges facing the province.”

Kaya Mfono, Associate Director: Public Sector Advisory at Grant Thornton

Notes to editors

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