Ezemvelo under fire

2012-03-17 00:00

EZEMVELO KZN Wildlife got a roasting in the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature yesterday when CEO Dr Bandile Mkhize and board chairperson Comfort Ngidi failed to turn up for a budget hearing.

Finance portfolio committee chairperson Belinda Scott accused the wildlife organisation of holding the legislature in contempt.

An angry Scott was made madder still by Wessels Nel, the only board member present. Nel said he took exception to her remarks.

He wanted to place on record that they had not been adequately informed. He felt his presence should be accepted as a representative of the board. Scott said she had noted what he said. “My stance has not changed. You are entitled to your opinion. This meeting was raised a couple of weeks ago and your chairperson was told directly that he had to be here. In fact we wanted the entire board.

“Whether you agree with me or not is entirely irrelevant. This is not the first occasion; it happened before. There are serious matters before Scopa [standing committee for public accounts] waiting to be dealt with,” she said.

MPL Maggie Govender called for a resolution to be tabled against Ezemvelo, saying it was the public entity that received the largest slice of KZN government funding. Scott said she would raise a motion of contempt and that she had contained her anger at Nel’s remarks.

“To get spoken back to is beyond contempt. I have already had them right up to here. The head of Scopa and I will be talking to the speaker.”

Ngidi, who was in Pretoria yesterday, had heard about what happened and said he had apologised profusely. He added that the dates were adjusted and this was when problems arose.

He already had an appointment in Pretoria that could not be changed and Mkhize was in Spain, having been sent there by the premier’s office. Ngidi said he had already contacted Scott and would follow up with a formal apology.

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