ANC condones corruption - Holomisa

2013-07-06 22:15

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Johannesburg - The behaviour of the ANC in dealing with the Tlokwe Municipality in North West is a sign that the ruling party condones corruption, the UDM said on Saturday.

"Here, ruling party councillors voted their mayor out of office for the second time and handed the mayorship to the Democratic Alliance (DA)," United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa said.

Holomisa told a UDM workshop in Limpopo that the councillors had publicly stated that they had voted against the mayor "because the African National Congress (ANC) mayor is corrupt".

"However, instead of working with its councillors in fighting corruption, the ruling party chose to expel them with immediate effect," he said.

Holomisa said the ANC's behaviour on the matter raised questions whether the nation could trust the ruling party in the fight against corruption.

On Thursday, the ANC in the North West welcomed the axing of 14 of its councillors from the Tlokwe municipality after they voted to unseat mayor Maphetle Maphetle.

The decision to expel the group was made in a provincial disciplinary committee (PDC) meeting held on Wednesday.

The ANC claimed that 16 of its councillors participated in an irregular council meeting where they voted for Maphetle's unseating.

The 16 ANC members were scheduled to face a disciplinary hearing on Wednesday, but only two of them attended the meeting.

The two, who pleaded guilty, were "reprimanded" by the PDC and it was decided that they would be provided with "guidance" by the party and not be expelled.

The other 14, who did not arrive for the meeting, were expelled. This was the second attempt to remove Maphetle.

In November, ANC factions in the municipality passed a motion of no confidence in him.

He was replaced by Annette Combrink - the first DA mayor in the province - when she defeated ANC candidate Lucky Tsagae by 20 votes to 19.

However, Maphetle was returned as mayor in February, when he won by 31 votes to Combrink's 21.

In the latest attempt to oust him, DA North West leader Chris Hattingh said 29 councillors from all parties, including the ANC, had unanimously voted to return Combrink to the position of mayor.

While the DA was in charge, it asked for a forensic investigation into irregularities at the municipality.

The probe found the council had irregularly bought Maphetle a R736 000 customised Mercedes-Benz. Maphetle was also found to have allegedly abused the municipality's disaster management fund and poverty relief fund.

The report recommended that formal disciplinary action be taken against him and other officials.

In May, the DA laid criminal charges against Maphetle.

In June, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela said she would investigate the claims of corruption involving Maphetle.

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