DA: Investigate ANC official after harassment claims

2017-02-08 21:25
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(File)

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Johannesburg - The Public Services Commission (PSC) must investigate fresh allegations of sexual harassment against corporate services executive manager, George Mthimunye in Mpumalanga, the provincial DA said on Wednesday.

“We believe it is improper and possibly unlawful to appoint him to high government office,” said Democratic Alliance MPL, Jane Sithole.

In an article published by the  City Press on Sunday, Keketso Maema of the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) confirmed that the new allegations were brought to them as early as June of last year, but said that the provincial legislature had kept it under wraps.

Maema also claimed the allegations were initially not acknowledged by the legislature’s senior management.

“Right now as we speak, his file is locked up; it’s not in the HR department at the legislature. What is it with that file? As a political party, we can’t get hold of it. That is why we are now writing to the Public Services Commission so that they help us,” said Sithole.

This is not the first time Mthimunye has been accused of sexual harassment. In 2001, while serving as municipal manager in Dr JS Moroka municipality in Siyabuswa, Mpumalanga, he was accused of sexual harassment by a former employee.

In February 2012, he was sued in the High Court in Pretoria for sexually harassing his married secretary for three years and was subsequently deployed to a different municipality. Mthimunye and the municipality lost the civil suit brought by his former secretary.
He and the municipality had to fork out millions of rands in damages.

Mthimunye was also suspended from the Naledi Municipality in the North West for inflating tenders, and inevitably suspended from the eMalahleni municipality when it was placed under administration a year after his law suit.

The DA had previously opposed his appointment as municipal manager in Emalahleni and warned the ANC that Mthimunye was not the right person for the job. 

But the ANC allegedly snubbed the DA and went ahead with the appointment.

Sithole said she felt that that the ANC had turned a blind eye and were protecting him despite purporting to advance the rights of women.

“The emotional scars that he leaves behind as his trademark is a slap on face of the emancipation of women in this province...The ANC can at this point not claim that George Mthimunye’s redeployment is as a result of his work ethic because he has left a trail of destruction in all the municipalities that he has been assigned to. To this day, eMalahleni and Dr JS Moroka Municipalities are still caught in the grips of a governance crisis that he helped create,” said Sithole.

ANC Mpumalanga’s provincial secretary, Lydia Moroane declined to comment.

When News24 attempted to contact Mthimunye, he cut the call and did not respond to a text message relating to the allegations.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  mbombela  |  crime  |  politics

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