eThekwini municipality at breaking point amid corruption - DA, IFP

2017-08-01 17:17
DA KZN leader Zwakele Mncwango with the IFP's Mdu Nkosi outside the Durban City Hall. (Mxolisi Mngadi, News24)

DA KZN leader Zwakele Mncwango with the IFP's Mdu Nkosi outside the Durban City Hall. (Mxolisi Mngadi, News24)

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Durban – The DA and IFP in eThekwini on Tuesday joined hands in their fight against alleged corruption and bad governance within the ANC-run municipality.

In a picket outside the Durban City Hall, the leaders of both political parties told News24 they decided to come together to highlight challenges facing the municipality before it "collapses".

DA KZN leader Zwakele Mncwango claimed the municipality, which has a R45bn budget, is on the brink of collapsing. "It’s our view that we need to come out and inform the public," he said.

Mncwango lambasted Mayor Zandile Gumede for denying any knowledge or involvement in the buying of four armoured vehicles (Casspirs) worth R19.9m and dogs for the Metro Police Department.

"It can’t be right that the mayor doesn’t know who took a decision to buy armoured vehicles and dogs for the Metro police. We are asking how the mayor can say she doesn’t know when the municipality seem to be gearing up for a war with its residents," he said.

Election promises

Mncwango reckoned that protests in the municipality were as a result of frustration owing to promises made by the council to residents ahead of the local government elections.

“Who is running this council,” asked Mncwango said, noting that the Auditor General (AG) found that about 377 companies were awarded tenders with fraudulent documents.

The AG also reported that total irregular expenditure for the 2016/2017 financial year totalled nearly R33.8m.

Mncwango alleged that the council has seen an exodus of officials from the municipality under Gumede’s leadership.

"About 12 senior officials have resigned, some have been suspended and some have been displaced just because of their political decisions," he said.

There are issues that the IFP and the DA agree on, said Mdu Nkosi, IFP spokesperson in the municipality.

"For example, the issue of buying the Casspirs, we are not happy about that because we don’t know the resolution behind that. It is not the municipality’s function but of the SAPS to purchase such cars."

Commenting on the controversial Glebelands killings, Nkosi said he doesn’t believe the purchasing of Casspirs will solve the problem. Glebelands Hostel in Umlazi has been involved in politically motivated violence, which has claimed almost 100 lives. It is under scrutiny by the Moerane Commission.

Nkosi also demanded answers relating to who authorised the purchasing of dogs for the Metro police. "They are not even trained. Normally we get the dogs from sponsors."

Help from the Public Protector

The IFP has already written to the Public Protector to investigate allegations of bad governance in the municipality, said Nkosi.

He claimed people who are enriching themselves and awarding tenders and employment to their relatives.

"We are controlling R45bn but the people of eThekwini can’t see that, which shows there’s something wrong."

Nkosi said the IFP is of the view that an investigation by the Public Protector will expose officials involved in corruption.

Read more on:    public protector  |  da  |  anc  |  ifp  |  durban  |  corruption  |  politics

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