Integrated Development Planning and Service Delivery in the Case of the Emfuleni Local Municipality in South Africa
AbstractIntegrated Development Planning, as a new approach to local government, involves the entire municipality and its citizens in finding solutions to achieving good long-term development. The approach is developmental in nature. As such, integrated development planning presupposes extensive, inclusive, democratic participation of citizens. This article makes an exposition of a disjuncture between the integrated development processes and the participation of the citizens resulting in contested socio-economic and political terrains. Adopting a qualitative approach, and a sample of municipal officials, councillors, political parties and ordinary citizens, using unstructured face-to-face interviews, a focus group discussion and observation the study found out that under current conditions the level of engagement with the community is still not effective as communities are not involved during the various planning phases prior to the implementation of the plans; there is dissonance between targets set at lower and higher levels; mismatch between functions and allocated budgets; schism between growing needs and poor collection rates – all conspiring to encumber effective and efficient service delivery. The major contribution of this article is a model, the Municipal- Community Engagement for Effective Service Delivery, which states, inter alia, that for effective outcomes, align projects with community needs; strengthen the intergovernmental relations system; regularly provide feedback, communicate and interact with communities and establish a monitoring and evaluation unit as contextual prerequisites in the area under study.
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