The Cape Navigator

Seaside Community Newspaper

Overstrand Municipality’s Draft Annual Report Open for Public Comment, But Accessibility Raises Concerns

Michael Hawthorne

HERMANUS – The Overstrand Municipality has recently tabled its draft annual report for the 2022/23 financial year, inviting public scrutiny and comment on the municipality’s performance. However, residents and observers are raising eyebrows at the seemingly elusive accessibility of the report online.

At a January meeting of the Council, the draft annual report was presented, outlining the Municipality’s activities and financial standing between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023. The report aims to enhance accountability to the local community, adhering to the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) 56 of 2003, which mandates the preparation of an annual report detailing the municipality’s performance in service delivery, budget implementation, accomplishments, challenges, and measures taken to improve performance.

Among the highlights listed in the Annual Report are the accolade of being awarded the Best Municipality in the Western Cape by Premier Winde in the first Service Excellence awards, surpassing targets for water, sanitation, and refuse removal, and the successful implementation of the emergency load shedding relief grant to enhance backup power at water and wastewater facilities. Remarkably, the Overstrand Municipality received a clean audit status for the 11th consecutive year, a testament to good management, control, and compliance with audit requirements.

However, while the Municipality encourages public participation and comment on the draft report, concerns have been raised about the accessibility of the report online. Despite verbal instructions for accessing the report, it is not directly linked in the online media statement, making it cumbersome, particularly for residents less internet savvy with navigating online platforms.

The report is said to be available for perusal during office hours at various locations, including the offices of Area Managers in Gansbaai, Stanford, Hermanus, and Kleinmond, public libraries in the Overstrand, the Corporate Head Office of the municipality in Hermanus, and on the municipality’s website at under ‘Documents’ and ‘Annual and Oversight Reports.’ However, there is no easy-to-follow direct link provided in the media statement.

Questions arise as to why the Municipality has not made it more straightforward for residents to access the report, such as directly linking or embedding the PDF within the statement.

The comment period for the draft report is set to close on February 29, 2024, and the Council will consider the final Annual Report along with all comments and representations received during a meeting scheduled for March 2024. Residents are encouraged to share their thoughts and concerns by emailing R Louw at


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