City of Tshwane's iPad splurge

2012-06-24 17:03
iPad. (Shutterstock)

iPad. (Shutterstock)

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Pretoria - South Africa’s biggest municipality is shopping for hundreds of the latest technological gadgets – and cocking a snoot at National Treasury in the process.

Documents in the possession of City Press show the City of Tshwane has issued a tender to buy 1 260 gadgets, ranging from iPads to Samsung Galaxy tablets.

A source in the municipality who asked not to be named said the gadgets were for Tshwane’s 210 councillors, executives and other senior managers. The high-end shopping spree directly contravenes a December 14 directive from National Treasury.

Treasury ordered municipalities to stop “non-priority expenditure, excessive councillor and staff perks such as luxurious mayoral cars and houses, notebooks, iPads and cellphones, travel and subsistence allowances”.

According to the tender document, the City of Tshwane is in the market for 250 iPads, 100 ASUS Eee Slate Windows tablets, 100 Dell Streak Android tablets, 30 Motorola XOOM tablets, 30 Archos 9 tablets, 100 BlackBerry PlayBooks, 150 Fujitsu Lifebooks, 100 HP slate tablets, 50 Netbook Navigators, 50 Notion Ink - ADAM tablets, 100 Samsung Galaxy tablets, 100 Toshiba Portégé and 100 ViewSonic Viewpads.

Tshwane is not the first municipality to buck Treasury’s instructions: in March, the cash-strapped Dr Ruth Mompati District Municipality bought 33 iPads for its 12 councillors and senior bosses.

City of Tshwane communications executive director Nomasonto Ndlovu promised to respond to questions over a two-week period, but did not.

Treasury spokesperson Bulelwa Boqwana also didn’t respond.

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