DA hands Tlokwe report to protector

2013-05-08 10:18
DA (Picture: Sapa)

DA (Picture: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - A forensic report on alleged corruption involving Tlokwe mayor Maphetle Maphetle has been handed to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela for further investigation, the DA said on Tuesday.

"The DA commissioned the forensic audit as part of the party’s campaign against corruption during our short time in charge of Tlokwe," said spokesperson Juanita Terblanche.

Tlokwe municipality comprises Potchefstroom and surrounding areas in the North West.

Funds abused

Terblanche said the report found Maphetle was allegedly involved in siphoning of R300 000 from the municipality’s Poverty Relief Fund to sponsor a jazz festival.

Further alleged abuse of the Disaster Management Fund by Maphetle were also documented by forensic auditors, she said.

"These findings show that the mayor [Maphetle] was led by personal gain to abuse funds meant to assist impoverished residents and deal with disasters, such as shack fires."

Terblanche said her party was pinning its hopes on Madonsela.

"We have no confidence in the ANC’s Tlokwe leadership to deal with these forensic findings in an appropriate and legal way... the DA trusts that the public protector will come to a fair conclusion about the suitability of Maphetle to hold office."

Maphetle was reinstated as mayor in February.

ANC factions at the municipality passed a motion of no confidence in Maphetle in November 2012.

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

Comment from Maphetle could not be obtained as his cellphone was switched off. His secretary said he was attending a meeting.

ANC disputes report

ANC North West spokesperson Kenny Morolong said his party was aware of the report on Maphetle and did not recognise it because it was "illegal".

"The investigation was a DA probe, and not commissioned by the Tlokwe council. This so-called forensic report was never presented before council. Instead we hear about it in the media."

Morolong said the report was deemed illegal because Combrinck appointed a service provider of her own choice without following proper procedures.

"If the report points criminality towards Maphetle, why is the DA not laying a charge with the police instead of running to Madonsela's office?" Morolong asked.

The "doctored" report was an attempt by the DA to place the ANC in a bad light, he said.

Comment from Madonsela's office was not immediately available.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  maphetle maphetle  |  mahikeng  |  local government  |  corruption  |  politics  |  tlokwe leadership battle

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