‘Manyi had conflict of interest’

2011-09-28 14:27

 Black Management Forum (BMF) president Jimmy Manyi did have a conflict of interest when he headed the labour department, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela said today.

The same did not apply to his position now as head of government communications, she told the National Press Club in Pretoria.

There was, however, “a perceived conflict of interest”, and the potential for conflict in his new position needed to be carefully managed.

Manyi had to be excluded from some decision making.

In her findings she said it needed to be established where such conflicts could occur.

She said it might be that Manyi would have to “divest himself of the private interest” where such a conflict occurred.

There might be a need to make “a permanent change to some or all of Mr Manyi’s responsibilities”.

Madonsela’s inquiry into Manyi arose from a complaint by Paul Hoffman, a director of the Institute for Accountability.
Hoffman made the complaint on May 25 2010.

Manyi was suspended from his post as labour department director-general after a complaint by Norwegian ambassador Tor Christian-Hilden.

He said that Manyi had tried to promote his own business interests during a diplomatic meeting.

Madonsela said today that the envoy had not been interviewed.

She said that according to information provided to her, Manyi had offered the Norwegians the opportunity to be trained by the BMF on black economic empowerment.

Madonsela found that in his position as labour director-general, Manyi had “failed to comply with the Public Service Code of Conduct”.

He had also failed to abide with the rules of the Public Service Commission that managed “conflicts of interest through the financial disclosure framework”, she said.

She found that former labour minister Membathisi Mdladla had also failed to comply with the code of conduct, which required him to manage Manyi’s conflict of interest.

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