R250m payouts for former councillors

2012-01-04 10:14
Cape Town - Taxpayers will be coughing up about R250m for former councillors who were not re-elected in last year’s local government elections.

This despite research by Municipal IQ, an independent online information service on local government, showing that between 2006 and 2010 there were 277 protest marches against bad service delivery.

Mbulelo Musi, spokesperson for the co-operative governance and traditional affairs department, said the money will be used to compensate former councillors who had served their full five-year terms for their “hard work under extremely difficult circumstances”.

“The payments are in recognition of the great contribution to service delivery made by former councillors to improve people’s lives.”

He said about 5 000 councillors from all political parties from all over the country will qualify.

Joint decision

Musi said the department, the Seriti commission for the remuneration of public office-bearers, the SA Local Government Association (Salga) and the national treasury had taken a joint decision on this.

The treasury has budgeted R256m for this purpose.

Musi would not say whether the payment, which equates to three months’ pensionable salary, will be performance-related.

“The commission did not say anything about performance, but we foresee no problems in this regard.”

Municipal trade union Samwu spokesperson Tahir Sema said they oppose the payments.

“It is a waste of money that could be spent on service delivery. It would be better at least to link it to councillors’ performance. If they had performed well, there would not have been any protests about service delivery, would there? How does one compensate such people?”

Derek Luyt, an analyst with the Public Service Accountability Monitor, also said the money could be better spent elsewhere.

“I can find no justification for something that was not budgeted for and with which aggrieved councillors are now being pacified.”

Luyt said this set a dangerous precedent. “They should get nothing. This represents everything that is wrong with our political system, where office-holders see their work as just one more way of making money.”

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.
Read more on:    municipal iq  |  samwu  |  politics  |  government spending  |  service delivery

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Habana believes in younger Boks
All Blacks ready for a 'hell of a battle'
Barnes to ref Boks, Wales clash
Brave Blossoms: 'Sport heroes of Japan'

Your incisive and innovative mind is on fire. You may be keen to explore new avenues that can help to inspire you. You may...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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.


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.