The Vuthela iLembe LED Programme
responds directly to the urgent need to address unemployment, poverty and inequality by accelerating inclusive local economic development and growth in line with the National Development Plan, the KZN Provincial Growth and Development Plan, iLembe DM Growth and Development Plan (Reviewed 2015/2016) as well as the IDPs of the family of local municipalities in the district.

Although there is provincial and national alignment, the programme focusses on bringing back the Local in local economic development. The KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Spatial Economic Development Strategy (PSEDS) prioritizes activity development corridors on the basis of two distinct qualification criteria. These are the economic development potential (realized or dormant) and evidence of greatest needs based on poverty densities. ILembe District Municipality is located within the prioritized Development Corridor between Durban and Richards Bay (Provincial Nodes and Corridors-KZN PGDS). With regards to the second requirement (poverty densities) , ILembe District Municipality is one of the municipalities approved by the KZN Government to participate on the Poverty Eradication Master Plan (PEMP 2016-2019) on the basis of the number of wards with communities described as absolutely poor in the 2011 census.

The district has registered good economic growth and its economic contribution has had a positive impact on the provincial economic outlook. Notwithstanding the spatial advantages, the slow pace of local and inclusive economic growth has meant that the challenges of high unemployment, poverty and inequality persist in the district as they prevail in the rest of the country.

The key partners in the programme are:

  • The iLembe District Municipality, Enterprise iLembe, KwaDukuza Local Municipality , Mandeni Local Municipality, Maphumulo and Ndwedwe Local Municipalities.
  • Department of Economic Development Tourism and Environmental Affairs of the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government (EDTEA)
  • ILembe Chamber of Commerce.
  • The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.
  • The National Treasury of South Africa (NT)
  • The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs of the Swiss Confederation (SECO).

If you need more info about the Vuthela LED Programme or would like to submit a query online

We are grateful to the Swiss government for supporting a programme which speaks directly to our radical economic transformation efforts. This is an initiative that will guarantee the building of essential infrastructure that is crucial for industrialisation and new business opportunities.

Mr Sihle Zikalala
MEC for Economic Development in the Province,