Agency Development and Support
 

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Sekhukhune Development Agency

 
 

Project Involvement

Sekhukhune District Municipality, a low-key area in Limpopo Province, is brimming with opportunities yet to be explored. Agriculture, mining and tourism all have the potential to spearhead development.

Located right on the edge of Mpumalanga Province, Sekhukhune consists of five local municipalities – Elias Motsoaledi, Ephraim Mogale, Greater Tubatse, Fetakgomo and Makhuduthamaga. Sekhukhune Development Agency (SDA), an entity set up by the district municipality and the Industrial Development Corporation to leverage sustainable local economic development in the region, is in the midst of identifying and implementing high impact projects that will benefit local communities.

Projects it is working on include:

  • Potlake Nature Reserve upgrade;
  • Schuinsdraai Nature Reserve revitalisation;
  • De Hoop tourism development;
  • Groblersdal white meat abattoir;
  • Small town regeneration;
  • Development of Manche Masemola heritage site;
  • Logistics hub and agri-processing plant; and,
  • Farming.


"We also have plans to promote recycling projects that will bring meaningful change in the district," said the agency's chief executive officer, Sephaka Motswiane. A decision was taken to adopt a spatial targeting approach as the main centres in the district already have the basic infrastructure to support economic development.

Over 200 jobs are expected to be created once the projects are up and running.

SDA's other focus is tourism, and it has plans to develop facilities at Schuinsdraai and Potlake nature reserves in a quest to attract more tourists to the scenic area. "Our nature reserves have got several species of game which makes it easy to attract tourists." Motswiane believes that Sekhukhune has a lot of potential when it comes to tourism, and is keen to oversee the development of world-class facilities and introduce more exciting activities that will encourage the influx of visitors.

The region also has large mineral resources like chrome, platinum and diamond deposits. According to the Motswiane, there are about 45 mines in the district that produce mainly platinum, chrome and ore, making it one of the fastest growing areas in the country after Rustenburg. Motswiane envisages establishing a mining incubator to train people who can be absorbed into the mine.

Defined by rolling acres of lush green hills and mountains, Sekhukhune district is also endowed with good soil and plenty of water, which has led to a strong agriculture sector. Tobacco, grapes, citrus, maize, sweet potatoes and cabbage are farmed. Yet there room for growth and the agency has prioritised farming.

SDA projects manager Robert Mashitoa indicated that the agency was determined to improve the fortunes of farmers by getting investors to help them with funding. "Farming is the economic driver in Sekhukhune because of the abundance of arable, fertile land. As an agency we are pushing farmers to revive collapsed projects by sourcing funds from investors," he said.

Sekhukune is rural in nature and covers an area of about 13 235 square kilometres with a population of about a million. Half the population is younger than 18 and the male to female ratio at this age is equal. However, women make up 60% of the over 18 or working age population. According to the latest statistics, the population has declined – probably because local people migrate to the cities in search of greener pastures.

SDA was established in 2009 to identify and implement high impact projects that will benefit communities in the area.

Vision
SDA's vision is to be an innovative agency that champions sustainable economic development.

Mission
Its mission is to facilitate economic development through high impact, sustainable and strategic economic projects to attain shared growth.

Objectives
It has distinct objectives:

  • Investment attraction;
  • Project implementation facilitation;
  • Institutional capacity building;
  • Stakeholder management;
  • Financial sustainability;
  • Enterprise development; and,
  • Skills development.

 

 

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