Making sense of local government

| GroundUp Editor

To help us and our readers better understand local government service delivery, GroundUp has been interviewing ward councillors and residents.

We will continue doing this regularly. We hope these interviews will highlight the most important issues affecting people in Cape Town and what, if anything, is being done to address them.

It is not an easy task from the perspective of unbiased journalism. The tension between the Democratic Alliance (DA) and the African National Congress (ANC) in the province is intense. The harsh words traded between members of the two parties are not always rational. The city and province are controlled by the DA, but many wards have ANC councillors. In these wards, we have noticed that the city and the councillors blame each other for perceived service delivery failures. On the other hand in wards run by DA councillors, the problems often seem comparatively minor. This might give the impression that DA wards are being run well and ANC ones are being run badly. But the real picture is much more complex. Affluent, aspiring middle-class and better-off working class wards are almost always DA-run. There is obviously greater tension in poorer, less developed wards and these are also the ones that usually have ANC councillors.

Nevertheless, we will do our best to give unbiased coverage of what is going on in wards. We will get the views of all the major players, especially community members. When we have evidence that a councillor or politician is lying or not performing, we’ll say so, irrespective of which party they’re from.

We hope you enjoy reading our ward reports and that you find them informative.

Focus on wards

Khayelitsha Councillor: City ignores my community.

Athlone councillor finds ways to counter violence and drug use.

Montevideo: Finding ways to stop burglaries.

Picking up the pieces left by a corrupt councillor.

It’s still dark in Khayelitsha.

Five years and still no street lights on N2 Gateway.

TOPICS:  Local government

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