Makhanya verdict deferred

2016-09-21 09:20
Suspended Mhlathuze Water Board CEO, Sibusiso Makhanya (far right) pictured with Ashley Starkey and Cyril Gamede a few years ago.

Suspended Mhlathuze Water Board CEO, Sibusiso Makhanya (far right) pictured with Ashley Starkey and Cyril Gamede a few years ago. (File)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

The high court reserved judgment yesterday in a legal battle involving suspended Mhlatuze Water Board CEO Sibusiso Makhanya and the board’s chairperson, Duduzile Myeni.

Myeni, who is reportedly a staunch ally of President Jacob Zuma, has also been in the public eye recently due to her role as chairperson of the beleaguered SA Airways board.

Makhanya is challenging the legality of his suspension in November last year, pending disciplinary proceedings against him, and maintains that he was the victim of “ulterior motives”.

In turn it is contended on behalf of Myeni that there were good grounds to suspend him and to charge him with misconduct, and that charges formulated against him are the product of independent investigations.

Appearing before Judge Yvonne Mbatha on Tuesday, Makhanya’s advocate, Griffiths Madonsela, SC, argued that Water and Sanitation Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane acted illegally by extending the term of office of the Mhlatuze Water Board members and contended the board is therefore illegally constituted. The minister initially extended the term of office from February 28 last year and again in June this year, pending the proposed merger of the Umgeni and Mhlatuze water boards, a move which allegedly benefits Myeni as chair overseeing the amalgamation.

While Madonsela argued that the law makes no provision for the term of office of board members to be extended, the board’s advocate, V.I. Gajoo, SC, said there was nothing wrong with the minister’s action. “There is a road map in place to amalgamate the two boards … there was every reason for her to extend the office of the current board members instead of appointing an entirely new board. It’s common sense,” he said.

Another ground on which Makhanya is seeking to overturn his suspension is the fact that he was allegedly not afforded an opportunity to state his case when the decision to suspend him was taken.

Madonsela said a resolution by the board members on November 7 clearly stated that Makhanya was “suspended with immediate effect”.

He said the board’s suggestion that he was given a chance to make representations and was only suspended on November 20, after the representations were considered, was a “farce”.

Gajoo said on behalf of the board that Makhanya did not leave “with immediate effect” and was still working up to November 17. He said Makhanya had handed in two sick notes booking himself off work from November 10 to 17.

Judge Mbatha said she would take time to deliver her judgment in the case. No date was given for the ruling.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  water board

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.