PMB mayor vows to act on graft
MSUNDUZI Municipality Mayor Themba Njilo has vowed to take action against any municipal official who has been involved in corruption.
Njilo made the comments yesterday as the DA in the municipality had been pressing him for progress in the investigation against municipal manager Sizwe Hadebe.
Hadebe has been implicated in a recording in which he is allegedly heard asking for interview scores to be manipulated to favour a particular candidate. Hadebe has not spoken about the recording.
After the allegations were made public, nine senior managers in the council wrote to the Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta), Zweli Mkhize, asking him to investigate the running of the municipality under Hadebe.
Njilo said the DA should learn to be patient.
“I told them in the last council meeting that this was not a matter to rush. I am handling it and in the next council meeting I will update them.
“I am not casting any aspersions on the MM (Hadebe), but I am saying no one can be allowed to do as they please or engage in any criminal conduct in the council,” said Njilo.
DA leader Jerome Majola said they were exploring their legal options. “We have exhausted all internal options and what’s left is for us to go outside (courts).”
He said they were unhappy that Hadebe remained at work despite the seriousness of the allegations. “Other senior managers like the infrastructure services manager, the internal audit manager and senior manager at the office of the MM were all placed on precautionary suspension when allegations were made against them, why is that not done in this case?” asked Majola.
IFP councillor Thinasonke Ntombela said the municipality already had a problem with a high number of suspensions of senior management.
“At last count the council was already spending about R11 million on people on suspension,” he said.
“Njilo is probably looking at a legal opinion on how to charge the MM. He cannot risk suspending him without evidence. It is clear that the managers currently on suspension were suspended without evidence of wrongdoing and that is why the cases are difficult to finalise.
“The issue with the MM is that the recording cannot be used as evidence because it is a criminal offence to record someone without their permission,” he said.