- Nearly 50 000 projects funded since programme inception in 2011
Out of a total of 40 973 Poverty Eradication Projects funded since inception of the programme, 9 393 are not operational while 3 059 have completely failed.
Answering a question at Ntlo ya Dikgosi on behalf of the Minister of Entrepreneurship, the Assistant Minister of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Mabuse Pule said, since inception of the Poverty Eradication Programme in 2011, a total of 40 973 projects comprising 41 721 beneficiaries have been funded to-date.
Though Pule did not explain what contributed to the total failure of nearly a quarter of the funded projects, the government and the beneficiaries have traded blame over the years.
The government has attributed the collapse of most of the projects to lack of commitment by the beneficiaries, accusing some of abandoning them in their infant stages to join paying social protection programmes like Ipelegeng.
On the other hand, the beneficiaries accused the government lack of support in terms of securing markets and policies that will enable them to operate without hindrance.
Pule told Ntlo ya Dikgosi that it will be necessary to relook at some aspects of the programme, including selection criteria for beneficiaries, types of projects to support as well as the most appropriate business models to ensure project sustainability and local economic development.
“The transfer of poverty eradication and other empowerment programmes to the Ministry of Entrepreneurship under the Wealth Creation Programme was meant to ensure that projects that are funded were more economically sustainable,” he said.
“This calls for dialogue with other stakeholders through various means, a pitso included. This pitso will, however, not be for mobilisation but a consultation forum on how the programme can be improved.”