MEC's spending - premier wants answers

2012-05-23 23:09
Pretoria - Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane was awaiting a response from MEC Humphrey Mmemezi on his alleged misuse of government funds, her office said on Wednesday.

"She has noted numerous media reports pertaining to the MEC Mmemezi. These include damage to a government vehicle and the alleged misuse of a government credit card," the premier's spokesperson Xoli Mngambi said.

The premier had asked the local government and housing MEC to react to these allegations.

"Further communication on the matter will be pronounced upon completion of the processes mentioned," Mngambi said.

On receiving a response Mokonyane would "apply her mind" and make a formal decision.

"It is important that we retain the significance of the legislative framework, to bring about integrity when dealing with such matters."

Mngambi could not say whether Mmemezi had been given a deadline to respond to Mokonyane's query.

On Tuesday, the Democratic Alliance called for Mmemezi to be fired after media reports claimed he had misused government funds during a trip to India.

"His contemptuous behaviour should not be allowed to continue. A full investigation is needed so that he is held to account for all misspending and contravention of rules," the DA's Jack Bloom said.

"Mokonyane must put aside internal ANC politics and fire him in the interests of good governance."

According to the Star newspaper, Mmemezi, who had a credit limit of R50 000 on his government-issued credit card, spent R22 839 for clothes in India using the government credit card on 25  September last year.

He reportedly spent another R31 000 on "party wear" and suits in Pramanik on 30 September. He apparently went on to pay R4 900 and R4 500 for clothing at other shops in India.

The paper reported that Mmemezi had been using the credit card to indulge himself and others at restaurants across South Africa before leaving for India.

In a different matter Mmemezi reportedly used the same credit card to purchase an art work worth R10 000 from fast food outlet McDonalds. He allegedly disguised the transaction as a purchase for hamburgers.

The DA had previously called for Mmemezi to be sacked on grounds that he misled the Gauteng legislature about damage to his official vehicle during an accident.

The DA's MPL Fred Nel said the BMW X5 transporting Mmemezi when it hit West Rand teenager Thomas Ferreira, knocking him off his motorbike, was reportedly being auctioned off.

However, officials from Mmemezi's department had claimed the vehicle was not in mechanical running order, and that this would affect its price at auction.

According to Nel, Mmemezi said the car was in good condition, except for the left rear door. It came to light that the car had sustained far more damage than Mmemezi had revealed.

According to Bloom, Mmemezi delayed responding to questions from the DA and would face more questions in the Gauteng legislature on Tuesday.

- SAPA
Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  thomas ferreira  |  nomvula mokonyane  |  humphrey mmemezi  |  johannesburg  |  local government  |  government spending
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