Cape Argus

End to cadre deployment urged


CADRE deployment into critical positions of leadership in municipali­ties, such as senior- and middle-management, must stop, a group of 35 civil society organisati­ons from across the country has said.

The organisati­ons include the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation, the Black Sash, the Dullah Omar Institute, the South African National Civic Organisati­on, and the Unemployed People’s Movement of South Africa.

Launching a campaign for reforms in the local government sector in line with suggestion­s made in the outgoing Auditor-General Kimi Makwetu’s last municipal audit report, the group demanded that appointmen­t of political activists be limited to councillor­s.

Public service accountabi­lity monitor Luyanda Shilangu said: “We have narrowed the measures we need to take take down to a list of seven, which include strengthen­ing oversight and the employment of officials who have the necessary qualificat­ions, experience or aptitude to do the job they are appointed to do.

“We require a profession­al cadre of municipal leadership and technician­s. Keep your deployment processes only in council appointmen­ts and not in the administra­tion,” said Shilangu.

The executive director of Afesis-Corplan, Nonthando Ngamlana, said: “We are putting forward some game-changing low-hanging fruit that is necessary to turn the tide of local government, and are signalling that we want to work with the government.

“We’re saying that the transforma­tion of South Africa depends on change in local government and therefore we cannot sit by and do nothing, especially as our work involves social justice and transforma­tion.”

The executive director of the Democracy Developmen­t Programme, Paul Kariuki, said: “The state of local government has largely been a contested space where we have seen failed accountabi­lity, increased politicisa­tion of public service, a limited desire to change the status quo, increased tolerance for corruption and poor public participat­ion in municipali­ties.”

In June Makwetu released the municipal audit results under the theme, “Not much to go around, yet not the right hands at the till”. In his report he said: “The safe and clean hands that can be relied upon to look after the public’s finances in local government are few and far between.”

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