Perceptions of local governance : a case study of the business community in Matlosana
When the African National Congress party took over the governing reigns in 1994, it inherited a country in which the previous apartheid system had caused severe injustices and inequalities among its citizens, especially at the local community level. Faced with the challenge of creating an equal and democratic South Africa, the African National Congress implemented a range of new policies that were aimed at creating sustainable economic growth prospects, and institutions supportive of local government transformation. Local government as an institution in South Africa has been provided with the responsibility of facilitating a developmental role. This role entails that local government has to provide basic services to all its citizens through local level institutions (e.g. municipalities). However, to date, the provision of basic services by municipalities has not satisfied the needs of many South Africans. This fact has been brought to light by numerous protests on the lack of municipal service delivery that have taken place in South Africa in recent years. Given the fact that businesses are beneficiaries of muniCipal services delivery, this study's overall aim is to capture businesses' perceptions of municipal service delivery in the Matlosana region. The empirical study was conducted by means of a questionnaire that was sent out to members of the West-Vaal Chamber of Business. The response rate of the survey was 35%. The questionnaire data was analysed in SPSS. The empirical findings of this study suggest that businesses that partiCipated in the survey are content with their municipality's ability to provide them with basic services, and that businesses are mainly concerned about municipal service delivery as far as trading, building and zoning regulations, and local economic development initiatives are concerned.