The Herald (South Africa)

More of­fi­cials in hot wa­ter

City acts against al­leged mis­con­duct with fur­ther sus­pen­sions, as mu­nic­i­pal man­ager’s sick leave ex­tended to Fri­day next week

- Nwabisa Makunga makun­gan@times­me­ Belgium · Iceland · Belarus · Nelson Mandela · Danny Jordaan

A CRACK­DOWN on al­leged mis­con­duct and cor­rup­tion in the Nel­son Man­dela Bay Mu­nic­i­pal­ity has led to more se­nior of­fi­cials be­ing sus­pended, while oth­ers are to be slapped with no­tices of sus­pen­sion.

Cor­po­rate ser­vices di­rec­tor Chris Jamda has been served with a no­tice of sus­pen­sion and must ex­plain to­day why he should not be sent home un­til a dis­ci­plinary process against him is con­cluded.

His boss, Mod Ndoy­ana, has been on sus­pen­sion since July.

Hu­man set­tle­ments di­rec­tor Mvu­leni Mapu is to be served with a no­tice of sus­pen­sion as soon as act­ing city man­ager Mzwake Clay can lo­cate him, a mu­nic­i­pal state­ment said yesterday.

Clay said Mapu was on sick leave.

Sup­ply chain of­fi­cial Sox Nkan­jeni has also been sus­pended.

Last week, The Her­ald re­ported that mu­nic­i­pal com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor Roland Wil­liams is on sus­pen­sion as well as another of­fi­cial in his depart­ment, Carle Rit­ter-Eras­mus.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity con­firmed this yesterday.

Twelve other of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing hu­man set­tle­ments boss Lindile Pe­tuna, trea­sury of­fi­cial Na­dia Ger­wel, fresh pro­duce mar­ket di­rec­tor Isaac Nokele, and cashiers and clerks from the eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment depart­ment have been sus­pended since June.

Mayor Danny Jor­daan’s chief of staff, Mlungisi Ncame, said dis­ci­plinary pro­ceed­ings against some were ex­pected to start as early as next week.

The al­le­ga­tions against them in­clude ir­reg­u­lar­ity, gross neg­li­gence, fail­ure or re­fusal to co­op­er­ate with an in­ves­ti­ga­tion and vi­o­la­tions of mu­nic­i­pal law.

“The sus­pen­sions are nec­es­sary to al­low in­ves­ti­ga­tions to take place, af­ter which a de­ter­mi­na­tion will be made on fur­ther dis­ci­plinary pro­ceed­ings,” Clay said.

The sus­pen­sions come as city man­ager Mpilo Mbam­bisa’s fu­ture in the mu­nic­i­pal­ity hangs in the bal­ance.

Mbam­bisa is fac­ing a litany of al­le­ga­tions of mis­con­duct and dere­lic­tion of duty re­lat­ing to con­tracts ap­proved with­out fol­low­ing ten­der pro­ce­dures.

The coun­cil has asked deputy mayor Bicks Ndoni to ne­go­ti­ate a pos­si­ble set­tle­ment with him to leave the mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

Ncame said yesterday that Mbam­bisa had ex­tended his sick leave from last week to Fri­day next week.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity only ex­pects a de­ci­sion from him then.

Clay said it was only fair to the mu­nic­i­pal­ity and the af­fected in­di­vid­u­als that the al­le­ga­tions be tested once and for all.

He said they were all in­no­cent un­til proven guilty.

The sus­pen­sions are part of what some say is a much-needed ad­min­is­tra­tion shake-up by Jor­daan in a mu­nic­i­pal­ity sink­ing in cor­rup­tion and mal­ad­min­is­tra­tion.

How­ever, crit­ics say the mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s lead­er­ship is act­ing in haste, ea­ger to be seen to be clean­ing up cor­rup­tion ahead of next year’s mu­nic­i­pal elec­tions.

Some of the of­fi­cials have been in hot wa­ter be­fore, but their cases were never fol­lowed through.

In 2007, Mapu – who was then a mu­nic­i­pal hous­ing unit man­ager – was sus­pended for a string of mis­con­duct charges.

The charges were with­drawn in 2009 and Mapu re­in­stated af­ter the coun­cil de­cided that his dis­ci­plinary hear­ing had dragged on for too long and cost too much. – Ad­di­tional re­port­ing by Avuy­ile Mgxi­tama-Diko

‘ The sus­pen­sions are nec­es­sary to al­low in­ves­ti­ga­tions to take place

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