Independent Development Trust (IDT) neglecting service provifer- statement by Mr Lennox Gaehler, MP - UDM Public Works Spokesperson (27 November 2009)

The UDM calls on the Independent Development Trust in the Eastern Cape to honour its commitments to its numerous service providers.

It has come to our attention that the IDT has not been paying service providers - many of whom are emerging contractors and consultants - in some cases for as long as two years. This is a disaster for these service providers, many of whom are from previously disadvantaged groups or who employ such people.

For a long period of time now these service providers have been the ones who stood at the forefront of bringing development to the poorest communities in the Eastern Cape. Many projects, such as the replacement of mud school buildings with proper brick buildings, would not have been possible without them.

However, now the IDT and the Department of Education point fingers at each other about bureaucratic procedures not being followed, whilst the service providers go without pay.

We appeal to the IDT and the Department to resolve this matter immediately and ensure that the service providers are paid promptly (and with interest on arrears). Countless enterprises and jobs are on the line as a result of their dispute; and if these service providers go under there will be nobody to carry on with their important development work.