Transformation in the property sector has been a matter of urgency for the nation’s economic empowerment plans, especially so for stakeholders that possess the unlocking tools to facilitate and accelerate this process.

The collaboration of stakeholders – government, the property sector, the financial sector and private sector – will ensure that this journey happens at a swifter pace than it has in the past. The Property Management Trading Entity (PMTE), as custodian and manager of the national government assets for the Department of Public Works (DPW), forms part of the building pieces towards enabling change in this sector, owing to the size of its state-owned and leasehold portfolios.

The year 2012 saw the kick-start of the seven-year Turnaround Programme, introduced by Minister of Public Works Thulas Nxesi, to stabilise the department after recognising the need for changes in the management and financial controls of state-owned buildings. It is then that the PMTE was formed. Its mission is to effectively manage the state’s immovable assets, while contributing towards economic and social development in the country and transformation of the built environment.

“Transformation, however, cannot happen when the fundamentals and basics are not in place. The transformation journey starts with transforming the organisation itself, which in our case, is the turnaround programme and operationalisation of the PMTE,” says Paul Serote, head of the PMTE.

The department is now in its efficiency enhancement phase and implementing reforms, improving efficiencies and spearheading special programmes, that include driving transformation initiatives in an environment that is stable and credible so it can start delivering on its mandate, but also for the purposes of being true to the country’s obligations

in line with the Constitution and the National Development Plan (NDP).