GCIS’s Eastern Cape office keeps residents informed and empowered
The Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) office in the Eastern Cape is at the centre of efforts to provide government content to those in the province.
Headed by Director Ndlelantle Pinyana, the office is tasked with informing the public about government policies, plans, programmes and achievements and creating informed stakeholders.
“This requires the development of a broad stakeholder database that reflects the provincial and local dynamics,” explained Pinyana.
The list of stakeholders that government information must reach is extensive. It includes MECs, chiefs of staff, heads of department, heads of communication, media liaison officers, municipal mayors, municipal managers, speakers, chief whips, municipal heads of communication, community development workers, communicators, legislature, media, civil society organisations, youth structures and heads of tertiary institutions.
The GCIS provincial office also provides communication support to key campaigns.
“We provided communication support for the OR Tambo Centenary and the University of Fort Hare Centenary celebrations as well as the King Sabata Dalindyebo Municipality Presidential Intervention Project in Mthatha,” said Pinyana.
Other projects of the provincial office include expanding the local government communication system and pioneering the first ever Presidential Siyahlola Monitoring Visit in the province.
Pinyana took up the position of Provincial Director in 2009 and was immediately confronted by challenges.
“The most vivid challenge was to transform the ineffective and inefficient office at output level to a welloiled machine that now earns the respect and admiration of all stakeholders it has and continues to interface with in the province,” he noted.
With these challenges now a thing of the past, Pinyana said he and his team are focused on equipping those in need of information to empower themselves.
Some of the highlights of the work of his office are the “progressive competitive spirit and sharing of best practices amongst provinces”.
"The provincial office also prides itself in driving the development communication agenda of a democratically-elected government where constitutionalism is the order of the day”, said Pinyana.
Looking to the future, he highlighted the need for more capacitybuilding in provinces and empowering officials in that space in their roles as they are at the coalface.
Reflecting on GCIS’ 20th anniversary, Pinyana called for a continuation of the key values GCIS has nurtured over the years. “Durability, reliability, reputation and trust remain key values that contribute to a successful company. It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it,” he pointed out.
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