Speaking at the Local Government Indaba at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre on Tuesday, Dlamini Zuma noted how in recent times the NGO sector had come to the aid of communities when municipalities fell short.
She said while this assistance was commendable, people should refrain from demonising the local government sphere.
“We have pretended that NGOs are saints and the local government, has been demonised. We must reject that,” said the minister.
She maintained that working together and co-operating held massive advantages for the people at the receiving end of service delivery and appealed for its strengthening.
Dlamini Zuma also suggested there should be closer working relations between the best-performing and worst-performing municipalities.
“We should consider twinning those that do well and those that are struggling, because there is room for ideas and skills exchanges which will help municipalities to perform better,” the minister said.
She expressed optimism that despite challenges facing the local government sphere, these could be overcome with greater co-operation and make municipalities function.
The indaba brought under one roof municipal councillors, officials, traditional leaders and local government experts and was aimed at developing a blueprint for municipalities to work more efficiently in delivering services to communities across the province.