Pretoria – The National Department of Public Works says none of the 94 projects of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) will be discontinued at the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality after the local government elections on 3 August.
Currently, the City of Tshwane and the EPWP are implementing the projects that have created more than 5 000 work opportunities in various townships across the City.
Other ongoing projects include street-cleaning projects, road and street maintenance, installation of storm-water pipes, maintenance of parks and home-based care.
One of the most successful projects is Operation Vat Alles, a street-cleaning project in which participants clean up illegal dumpsites at various townships across the City.
This project is implemented in several communities including Mabopane, Soshanguve, Winterveldt, Hammanskraal, Attredgiville and Ga-Rankuwa.
Collectively, the EPWP projects in the City of Tshwane have created 5 734 work opportunities between 1 April 2015 and 31 March 2016.
A total of 51.9 percent of the total number of work opportunities created were for young people, while women constitute a total of 54.9 percent and people living with disability had a representation of 0.69 percent.
Last week, several protesters claimed that the EPWP projects that were started during the term of the outgoing mayor Kgosientso Ramakgopa will be discontinued by the new City leadership.
The department refutes these unfounded allegations. “We also wish to dispel any confusion that these allegations may have caused among the EPWP participants in the Municipality,” the department said in a statement.
EPWP is politically non-partisan and serves to uplift lives of disadvantaged communities through providing work opportunities and skills training so that the beneficiaries can be self-sufficient.
The EPWP is one of the key government programmes that is aimed at alleviating poverty and unemployment in the country.
As a poverty relief initiative, the EPWP, in partnership with local municipalities, creates short to medium term work and training opportunities for the poor, unemployed and unskilled South Africans.
In some areas, EPWP enters into partnership with the private sector.
Launched in 2004, the programme has created more than 7 million opportunities since its inception. This achievement proves yet again that the programme is making a significant impact in contributing towards government’s concerted efforts of reducing poverty and unemployment.
The EPWP Phase 3 was launched by President Jacob Zuma in 2014 and aims to create over 6 million work opportunities by 2019.
When President Zuma launched the EPWP Phase 3 in Kieskammahoek in the Eastern Cape, he pledged that the Programme would contribute to community development and social cohesion
A Winterveldt resident, Sam Matjeni, said Vat Alles project did not only create the much needed work opportunity, but it reduced illegal dumping in townships.
“I admire this project because, apart from creating jobs, our kasi (Winterveldt) now looks beautiful and clean as participants work hard to reduce the number of illegal dumping sites in the area. This project is amazing because we are all benefiting from it!” said Matjeni.
Apart from creating work opportunities through the EPWP, the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality has also provided many participants with skills to effectively implement the projects in the City.