Parliament saddened by Komani Town Hall fire

The Portfolio Committee on Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs has expressed its sorrow over the weekend fire that destroyed the ancient Komani (Queenstown) Town Hall in the Enoch Mgijima Municipality in the Eastern Cape Province.
The Committee said in a statement that losing such an important and historic infrastructure, as well as all the records and archives contained in that facility, was terrible.
According to the committee, the cause of the fire has yet to be determined, and an investigation by the South African Police Service is now underway.
It also plans to ask the municipality to provide a report on the cause of the fire once the source of the fire has been established.
The committee urged municipalities to maintain and take care of infrastructure and assets that are under their responsibility.
“As stipulated in MFMA Circular No.71, the total repairs and maintenance expenditure of a municipality should at least be 8 percent of the carrying value of the municipality’s Property, plant and equipment and Investment property,” it said.
The committee also noted with concern that the implementation of the recommended National Treasury norm of 8 percent continues to elude most municipalities.
“The poor levels of spending on repairs and maintenance, as well as asset renewal, warrants considered attention, as inadequate investment in municipal infrastructure and its maintenance will make it difficult for municipalities to recover from disastrous incidents such as the Komani Town Hall fire,” reads the statement. – SAnews.