Council prosecutor: hands tied

2011-09-01 00:00

MSUNDUZI municipality prosecutor Sifiso Madiba has urged the council to finalise the renewal of the licensing authority, which expired a while ago, so that he is able to prosecute those who are not complying with the municipal bylaws.

“I sit in court every Wednesday to prosecute those who have been brought in by peace officers for not complying with municipal bylaws, and the problem that I face is that we cannot get a successful conviction because the cases become invalid as a result of not having a licensing authority,” Madiba, who is from the municipality’s legal division, told the economic development portfolio committee on Tuesday.

Licensing manager Mandla Sithole concurred with the prosecutor, saying the problem has been ongoing for two years.

“… since the licensing authority expired our legal division decided to delegate powers to the municipality manager,” said Sithole.

“Our duty is to passively enforce, educate, administer and inform the public at large regarding the business act,” he said. Once they are satisfied that people have been warned to acquire licences, but fail to do so, they take legal action against that person or business.

Sithole said they have applied for the renewal of the licensing authority.

Msunduzi deputy municipal manager Skhumbuzo Mpanza, who was not aware of the situation until the Tuesday meeting, said he will convene a meeting with the licensing department and the legal division to urgently resolve the matter.

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